Venture Capital: Low-Profile Digital Currency Group, Which Owns Grayscale, Valued At $10B
Barry Silbert (pictured above) is Founder & CEO, Digital Currency Group, which is also the parent of CoinDesk.
Digital Currency Group (DGC), a low-profile, cryptoasset-focused holding company that owns some prize digital businesses, has been valued at $10 billion in a secondary sale of shares. The transaction was led by SoftBank and saw participation by big name investors such as Google’s venture capital arm CapitalG, Ribbit Capital and others. (CNBC)
Existing backers of unlisted and privately-owned DGC are selling their shares to the new investors in a $700 million transaction. DGC has raised only $25 million since its founding six years ago. It has backed more than 200 blockchain companies and also owns Genesis, a prime brokerage and institutional lending firm. Its Grayscale Investments runs the Grayscale Bitcoin Trust, the largest bitcoin globally.
Rationale for the secondary sale
The participants in the secondary round are investors interested in the digital assets space and not necessarily in cryptocurrencies such as bitcoin, according to Silbert, who was speaking to CNBC. In turn, DGC was looking for serious backers with a long-term investing horizon.
“We’re the best proxy for investing in this industry,” Silber said. “We were looking for the type of backers that could be, and hopefully will be with, with us on this journey for the next couple of decades.”
Silbert confirmed to CNBC that he did not sell any of his shares in the round.
DGC is profitable and is likely to clock over $1 billion in revenues for the year.
What about an IPO?
Silbert is not ruling out an IPO by DGC, but revealed that it’s “not in the plans and not being discussed right now.”
That’s because the company had no liquidity issues or any plans for major acquisitions, Silbert said.
Image of Barry Silbert: Flickr
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