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Former US Solicitor General to Aid Grayscale’s Bitcoin ETF Efforts

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The world’s largest digital asset manager, Grayscale, has hired Donald B. Verrilli as additional legal counsel. With it, the firm is seeking SEC approval and finally converting its bitcoin trust into an exchange-traded fund.

Shades of Gray Strengthen the Bitcoin ETF Team

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In a recent tweet, Grayscale expressed his hope that Verrilli could be a great addition to the “strongest legal team” working to launch a Bitcoin ETF. He will serve as a senior legal strategist, working with the firm’s lawyers and in-house legal counsel.

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Verrilli is a highly experienced American lawyer who has won numerous court cases throughout his career. In 2011, he was appointed Solicitor General of the United States by former President Barack Obama. Verrilli held this position until 2016.

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Grayscale’s move to create an exchange-traded fund that tracks bitcoin’s behavior in the US is not new, but has so far been fruitless because the SEC has yet to approve such a product. The regulator has until July 6 to reject or approve Grayscale’s application.

Late last year, Grayscale General Counsel – Craig Salm – argued that the possible decision of the supervisory body to reject the launch of the ETF could be a violation of the law. The agency may have a “clear vision” for exchange-traded funds, he said, but it must demonstrate “reasonable credibility” in the matter.


Earlier this year, CEO Michael Sonnenschein said his company is ready to do whatever it takes to achieve its goal. Asked if the firm could sue the SEC, he replied, “I think all options are on the table.”

Grayscale success in Europe

Despite problems with US regulators, Grayscale introduced a cryptocurrency ETF in Europe last month. The product that tracks the Bloomberg Grayscale Future of Finance index consists of several companies in the industry, including exchanges, miners and brokers.

It has been listed on the London Stock Exchange, the German Deutsche Börse Xetra and the Italian Borsa Italiana. Thus, Grayscale became the first US digital asset manager to register a fund on the Old Continent.

“For us, the digital economy…is primarily driven by the proliferation of digital assets.” Sonnenschein said then.

Featured image courtesy of AboveTheLaw

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