Singapore wealth fund ‘secretly invested’ in Coinbase: report

Singapore wealth fund ‘secretly invested’ in Coinbase: report

The sovereign wealth fund of Singapore has been revealed as a significant backer of crypto exchange Coinbase (NASDAQ: COIN), according to a Bloomberg report.

GIC Pte is reported to have been involved in a $300 million funding round held by the exchange in October 2018, according to the news outlet, citing sources close to the company. This information has not previously been publicly disclosed, the report noted.

When pressed for comment, both GIC Pte and Coinbase declined.

At the time of the funding round in October, Coinbase welcomed support from a number of investment firms, including Wellington Management, Tiger Global Management and Andreessen Horowitz. However, there was no mention of investment from GIC, and GIC has yet to issue a statement confirming or denying its involvement in the investment.

The news about the GIC’s role in funding the startup is the latest example of a major institutional investor to get involved in the cryptocurrency and blockchain sectors.

While little is known about GIC’s possible previous investments in the space, the investment in Coinbase represents a significant vote of confidence in the industry.

The October funding round valued Coinbase at $8 billion, propelling the firm amongst the ranks of the world’s most valuable startup companies.

The investment comes in spite of the collapse in Bitcoin Core (BTC) and wider crypto prices since 2017, which seems to have done little to dampen institutional interest in the industry, despite causing significant difficulties for companies built around BTC, including some exchanges and mining companies.

GIC manages $100 billion worth of assets on behalf of the Singapore state, with investments spanning some 40 countries across multiple asset classes.

The reported investment in the cryptocurrency industry brings GIC in line with the growing number of financial institutions and funds turning to investments in sector, as the mainstream embrace of cryptocurrency continues to gather pace.

Coinbase forecasts revenues of $1.3 billion for 2018, comprised of gains from its private crypto holdings as well as trading commissions for transactions conducted through its platform.

The most prominent startup in the crypto sector, the reported investment from GIC shows the fund adopting a bullish outlook on the future of the industry.

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