Grayscale Investments, the company behind the Bitcoin Investment Trust, announced today that it will offer a fund to enable professional investors to gain exposure to Stellar and its digital currency known as Lumens.
Stellar, which is currently the sixth most precious crypto-currencies, arises from an idea of Jed McCaleb, an iconic figure in the cryptic world, who founded Ripple and an influential, unfortunate early exchange, the Mount. Gox. The project, which soon got the support of giant fintech Stripe, is pushing to make its Lumens currency a part of real-world banking.
Grayscale's decision to create a fund dedicated to Stellar could boost the currency as the company, which is a subsidiary of Crypto Behemoth Digital Currency Group, has a list of wealthy clients including hedge funds and family offices.
The recently launched Stellar Lumens Trust is Grayscale's ninth single product. Others include its flagship Bitcoin product, as well as funds for XRP, Ethereum and other niche cryptocurrencies like Zen.
According to the CEO, Michael Sonnenshein, Grayscale created the new product in response to investor demand. He added that he is personally bullish on the case of using the real world of Stellar, which is to act as a bridge currency in the transnational monetary corridors.
"I think the theory is solid: an American bank could keep large amounts of currencies in foreign banks and be able to bring foreign currency balances back to a balance sheet because the working capital is precious," he said. "Financial institutions will not be required to maintain balances everywhere, which will improve efficiency and complete budgets for other uses."
The idea of using cryptocurrencies as a means of freeing capital blocked in foreign currency accounts is not exclusive to Stellar. The Ripple company is pushing the same idea, encouraging banks to use a product called XRapid to make cross-border transactions using XRP currency.
For now, the use of XRP and Stellar Lumens by financial institutions as a bridge currency is still in a testing phase, but some believe it could get traction, which investors expect will leap the value of cryptocurrencies .
Meanwhile, for Sonnenshein, the launch of the new Stellar fund is further proof that reports of a crash in the encrypted markets have been badly overrated. He said that net gray-scale investment inflows continue to rise, attributing them to a growing interest in cryptography by professional investors and the availability of cryptographic products that have the regulatory guarantees required by the institutions.
Sonnenshein also rejected recent media reports suggesting that cryptographic companies are struggling to get their businesses on Wall Street. He said that reports on product delays and other downsides simply reflect the cryptographic industries' efforts to "try to do it well" and prepare for a long game.