First Bitcoin Fund in the Middle East Approved for Listing on Nasdaq Dubai
3iQ, a Canadian digital asset management firm, has received regulatory clearance for the listing of the Bitcoin Fund, QBTCu.TO, on Nasdaq Dubai. This makes it the first indexed crypto-based fund in the Middle East. Last year, it was listed on the Toronto Stock Exchange.
“The idea is bitcoin trades 24 hours a day … so our interest is to bring a regulated product to the Dubai market in their time hours,” said Frederick Pye, chairman, and CEO of 3iQ.
According to Pye, the Bitcoin Fund has roughly $1.5 billion in assets under management, and they will likely double this next year.
Dubai-based Dalma Capital, an alternative investment firm, was 3iQ's syndicate manager for the fund's Middle East expansion.
According to Zachary Cefaratti, CEO of Dalma, institutional investors, including sovereign wealth funds, have expressed interest in the listing.
“There's just been a lot of grassroots demand for it.”
Cefaratti further noted that there is also a “huge shift and a huge change” in the traditional world where previously regional banks would close the accounts of their clients who invested in Bitcoin.
The shares of the fund are expected to start trading on Nasdaq Dubai in the second quarter.
“We believe that this is the opportune moment to expand this unique investment opportunity into the Middle East region,” said Pye.
But Dubai is just the beginning as 3iQ is also in talks with the US, Sweden, Taiwan, and Singapore to launch the products into these markets as well.