Crypto trading platforms are heading for the public markets as the largest U.S. crypto exchange Coinbase sees its market value soar ahead of an imminent direct listing.
The trading platform eToro will go public through a merger with a special purpose acquisition company, or SPAC, valuing the firm at $10.4 billion, Bloomberg reported.
The firm, which offers Robinhood-like cryptocurrency and stock trading, and includes a dedicated cryptocurrency exchange called eToroX, will merge with FinTech Acquisition Corp V, which is led by dealmaker Betsy Cohen.
The eToro announcement comes as cryptocurrency exchange Kraken is reportedly also preparing to tap public markets. The firm is planning to go public next year also through a SPAC or a direct listing, Fox Business reporter Charles Gasparino tweeted.
But Kraken refuted the claim that it could use an SPAC, saying that it was “too big” for such a transaction, CoinDesk reported.
Kraken chief executive Jesse Powell has previously said he would take the company public, but only at a valuation over $10 billion.
Kraken is reportedly raising fresh capital at a valuation that could top $20 billion, according to a Bloomberg report last month. The exchange was previously valued at $4 billion in a 2019 funding round.
Powell’s desire for a higher valuation could be met by the planned direct listing of larger rival Coinbase, which could be worth $100 billion or more when it hits the public markets. Private secondary trading of Coinbase shares already give it an implied valuation of nearly $80 billion.
Etoro was founded in Israel and has 20 million users worldwide. It is expected to offer stock-trading services in the U.S. in the second half of this year. The firm offers no-fee cryptocurrency, stock, and derivatives trading in the form of contracts-for-difference.