Applicants have submitted final S-1 amendments for proposed spot Bitcoin ETF approvals expected from Wednesday.
Several prospective issuers of spot BTC exchange-traded funds have amended and finalized S-1 forms, in what is the final step in their quest for a spot Bitcoin ETF.
According to reports, recent amendments were from applicants, including Fidelity Investments, VanEck, Franklin Templeton, Pando Asset AG, Invesco, Ark Invest/21Shares, WisdomTree, and BlackRock. FIlings include details of market makers, including applicable fees.
For instance, BlackRock’s sponsor fee will be 0.2% for the first year of approval or until the ETF accumulates $5 billion worth of assets. After that, the fee will slightly rise to 0.3%. In an X post, Bloomberg ETF analyst Eric Balchunas described it as “much cheaper than I predicted.”
Ark Invest/21 Shares also reduced the fee for its ETF, dropping it to 0.25% from 0.8%. Interestingly, Ark Invest/21 Shares filed its own fees 20 minutes after BlackRock did, according to Balchunas. Highlighting the competition between prospective issuers, Balchunas posted:
“ARK going from 80bps to 25bps in one shot is breathtaking. The fee wars are intense but that’s another level.”
Balchunas also suggested that Ark Invest/21 Shares had no choice because “BlackRock at 30bps is (a) potential instant destroyer of anyone much higher.”
With all of the recent announcements, applicants and the crypto community are now waiting on the final word from the United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). An X post from Nate Geraci, President of investment advisory and wealth management firm ETFStore, noted that SEC staff had “no additional feedback” on recent paperwork submitted by multiple firms. Balchunas responded with “it’s basically done,” stating that all that’s left is official approval from the SEC for a potential January 11th launch.
Industry Maintains Bullishness Following Spot Bitcoin ETF S-1 Amendments
Sentiments in the crypto sector about a potential ETF approval are generally bullish. It would seem that the chance of a rejection is low. While everyone notes that the amendments do not guarantee approval, predictions are mainly optimistic. According to Bloomberg Intelligence analysts, the SEC is 90% likely to approve ETFs by January 10.
Some applicants have already begun promotions in anticipation of an SEC approval. Hashdex, one of the would-be issuers, recently launched a Bitcoin ad. Although not directly tied to a spot Bitcoin ETF, the ad highlights Bitcoin’s disruptive nature, stating, “Understanding Disruptive Innovation Takes time. Bitcoin’s Time Has Arrived.” The ad shows an interview where a man highlights skepticism around using computers for everyday tasks, suggesting that simple analog records penned down might be quicker or more efficient than digital versions. The idea is that while using computers is more efficient, people initially did not agree or understand, same with Bitcoin. Before Hashdex, Bitwise also launched a Bitcoin ad featuring actor Jonathan Goldsmith.
Interestingly, VanEck is not fazed about advertisements and promotions. In response to questions about advertisements, the company suggested that it prefers to buy more Bitcoin than channel funds to expensive marketing and ads.