Bitcoin ETP to Be Launched by 21Shares in UK

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In Brief
  • 21Shares has announced the launch of its bitcoin exchange-traded product on the U.K.’s Aquis Exchange.

  • 21Shares has already issued crypto ETPs on exchanges across Europe.

  • Last week, GTC Group launched its own Bitcoin ETP, also on the Aquis Exchange.

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Swiss crypto exchange-traded product (ETP) issuer 21Shares announced the launch of its bitcoin (BTC) ETP on the U.K.’s Aquis Exchange.

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21Shares has designed the ETP to provide United Kingdom-based institutional investors with exposure to bitcoin. ETPs trade similarly to listed stocks, so institutional investors in the U.K. can gain this exposure in a way they are familiar with. 

Engineered like an exchange-traded fund (ETF), the ETP will be centrally cleared. One unit of 21Shares bitcoin ETP (ABTC) represents the value of roughly 0.00035 bitcoin. 21Shares is launching ABTC on the Aquis Exchange, a pan-European multilateral trading facility business based in London and Paris. 

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GHCO and 21Shares

21Shares is launching in partnership with GHCO, a market-maker and liquidity provider specializing in ETFs. GHCO will act as the liquidity provider for ABTC. In practice, this means that institutional investors will have access to ample liquidity, similarly to the underlying asset. 

Already active in trading ETFs, GHCO recently started quoting crypto ETPs. It has developed a reputation for quoting the tightest spreads, which is a key indicator for institutional investors.

Meanwhile, 21Shares is already making a name for itself, having already issued several crypto ETPs around the world. The company has over $1.5 billion in AUM across 14 ETPs available on several European stock exchanges. These include exchanges in countries such as Germany, Switzerland, France, Austria, and the Netherlands. The U.K. launch of its ABTC comes after two years of testing and launching these other cryptocurrency ETPs. 

21Shares and Aquis Exchange plan on continuing their collaboration of bringing more crypto products to institutional investors in the U.K.. These will include ETPs in other prominent cryptocurrencies such as ethereum (ETH), XRP, tezos (XTZ), polkadot (DOT), cardano (ADA), and stellar (XLM).

GTC Group’s bitcoin ETP

Although 21Shares’ ABTC is among the first Bitcoin ETPs issued in the U.K., GTC Group already launched their own bitcoin ETP, last week. They also listed their ETP on the Aquis Exchange, but not before attempting to issue it on the London Stock Exchange.

Having similarly issued ETPs in Switzerland, GTC Group expressed frustration about the lack of cooperation on the part of London’s institutional exchange, whose clearing house does not accept crypto-based products. As a consequence, GTC Group chose Aquis Exchange instead, and its ETP will also be cleared in Switzerland. 

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Nick is a data scientist who teaches economics and communication in Budapest, Hungary, where he received a BA in Political Science and Economics and an MSc in Business Analytics from CEU. He has been writing about cryptocurrency and blockchain technology since 2018, and is intrigued by its potential economic and political usage. He can best be described as an optimistic center-left skeptic.

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