Harris Fricker, CEO of GMP Capital, said that 50 firms tied to blockchain technology and cryptocurrencies are set to list on Canadian stock exchanges in the next year, thanks in part to a junior market that’s more comfortable with risk than other parts of the world.
According to bloomberg, Fricker stated:
The level of activity in this market of quality plays, quality teams is as high as I’ve seen since the internet age.
Canada’s place in this is dramatically more important than it was in the first phase of the internet.
Canada is emerging as a hub for cryptocurrency stocks amid “a virtuous circle” of expertise and business, backed by a capital markets ecosystem that supports small companies, particularly on the TSX Venture Exchange,While that system has been geared toward miners, and oil and gas companies in the past, the marijuana industry has surged to a market value of more than C$17bn ($13bn) ahead of recreational legalisation in July, and at least eight cryptocurrency-related stocks are now trading in Canada.
The University of Waterloo and University of Toronto are “hotbeds” for the crypto-industry.
Russian-Canadian Vitalik Buterin introduced the world to his Ethereum blockchain in 2013, not long after dropping out of the University of Waterloo, near Toronto. It all makes Canada nicely positioned to be a leading hub for these technology companies.
Bitcoin surged above $15,000 on Thursday, extending its advance this month to more than 50%, sparking worries over a bubble in the digital currency. Fricker said that while there’s bound to be volatility in the market, he’s not concerned about its long-term viability. “I believe that bitcoin is a rapidly emerging, new asset class,” he said. “All bitcoin does is make mathematics the central bank governor.”
Closely held firms will likely go public by acquiring existing listed companies rather than initial public offerings (IPOs), Fricker said. The so-called reverse take-over (RTO) structure has been used for years in Canada’s resource sector as it allows a public listing without having to file a prospectus with regulators or to woo investors through a stock sale.
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