Coinbase is perhaps the most well known crypto on-ramp outside of the crypto ecosystem. The brand carries incredible weight in the digital currency scene and is widely viewed as the easiest means for a new crypto user to get their first piece of digital currency.
As reported by Reuters, Coinbase is thought to be preparing for a stock market listing. According to a source, the exchange is exploring going public via a direct listing instead of a traditional initial public offering (IPO), potentially even this year. Prior to listing Coinbase would need to acquire approval from the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission’s (SEC) – a daunting task, but one that could have significant consequences for this fragile ecosystem.
Due to the size and notoriety of Coinbase, the decision from the SEC regarding this matter may well impact the cryptocurrency space as a whole since the SEC is notoriously strict in terms of crypto regulation. However, a green light from the SEC for Coinbase to get listed could spark a renewed interest in the digital asset markets.
The most recent valuation of Coinbase was $8 billion USD, which was derived from a Series E funding round in October 2018 where Coinbase raised $300 million USD in private funding. This valuation was solidified during an on-going cryptocurrency bear market. Currently it seems like the bulls are returning to crypto, so it’s possible that a Coinbase listing could open with a valuation much larger than $8 billion USD.