Grayscale launches fund holding Ethereum alternatives

Grayscale has launched a new fund providing exposure to a variety of smart contract ecosystems that have emerged amid the growth of decentralized finance (DeFi).

The Grayscale Smart Contract Platform ex Ethereum Fund (GSCPxE) holds Cardano (ADA), Solana (SOL), Avalanche (AVAX), Polkadot (DOT), Polygon (MATIC), Algorand (ALGO) and Stellar (XLM) as of March 16. The idea, according to Grayscale CEO Michael Sonnenshein, is to enable investors to have stake in a variety of developing platforms rather than betting on one to emerge as the primary venue for decentralized activity.

“Smart contract technology is critical to the growth of the digital economy, but it’s still too early to know which platform will win
– from attracting and retaining the most vibrant developer communities, to ensuring the platform is high-speed, flexible, and scalable," he said in a statement. "The beauty of GSCPxE is that investors do not have to choose one winner, and instead can access the development of the smart contract platform ecosystem through a singular investment vehicle.”


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The fund excludes ether, since Grayscale expects many investors already engage with Ethereum. This product is a means to cast a wide net of exposure for the rest of DeFi.

The fund uses an index offered by CoinDesk indices to track the assets, with the portfolio's holdings weighted by market capitalization. Cardano and Solana are the two highest weights in the fund, each making up more than 24% of its holdings. Avalanche and Polkadot follow with each making up 16%. 

This is Grayscale's third diversified fund, following its Decentralized Finance Fund and its Digital Large Cap Fund. At the start of this year, it announced a reshuffling of assets in its Decentralized Finance Fund as part of its quarterly rebalancing, removing Bancor and UMA and adding AMP. 

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Aislinn Keely is a reporter on The Block's policy team holding down the legal beat. She covers court decisions, bankruptcies, regulatory actions and other key moments in the legal sphere, putting them in context for the wider crypto industry. Before The Block, she lent her voice to the NPR affiliate WFUV and helmed Fordham University's student newspaper. Send tips or thoughts on all things policy and legal to or follow her on Twitter for updates @AislinnKeely.