In a phone interview with Bloomberg, managing director Michael Sonnenshein said 2020 has seen a significant rise in “Ethereum only” investors, underscoring the asset’s growing appeal beyond the development community.
“Over the course of 2020 we are seeing a new group of investors who are Ethereum first and in some cases Ethereum only. […] There’s a growing conviction around Ethereum as an asset class.”
Grayscale manages a class of funds that provide investors with direct exposure to the cryptocurrency market. Although Grayscale’s Bitcoin Trust remains the most popular fund, its Ethereum Trust has also seen a sharp rise in net inflows.
In the third quarter, weekly inflows into the Grayscale Ethereum Trust averaged $15.6 million. Net investments in the larger Bitcoin Trust averaged $55.3 million per week. The Grayscale family of funds saw record inflows at the end of October.
Earlier this week, Grayscale announced that its Ethereum Trust would undergo a nine-for-one split on Dec. 17, a move that could make the fund more attractive to investors. As Cointelegraph reported, shareholders on record as of Dec. 14 will receive eight additional shares for each share held.
A big part of Ethereum’s broadening appeal is the explosion of decentralized finance, or DeFi, applications being built on top of the blockchain. Bloomberg Intelligence strategist Mike McGlone said Ethereum “appears to be maintaining platform leadership status” in this emerging market.
Ether price has gained more than 353% year-to-date but remains at less than half of its all-time high.
Speaking to the future of Ethereum, Sonnenshein said the smart contract platform “has along the same lines of the staying power Bitcoin has.”