Crypto index fund manager Bitwise Asset Management has stressed that it has no relationship with the failed technology startup Bitwise Industries, which is currently facing charges from the United States Securities and Exchange Commission.
Today we announced charges against Jake Soberal and Irma Olguin, Jr., the former co-CEOs of Fresno, California-based private technology services startup Bitwise Industries Inc., for misleading investors about the company’s finances.
— U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (@SECGov) November 9, 2023
On Nov. 9, Irma Olguin, Jr. and Jake Soberal, the founders of Bitwise Industries, were charged with conspiring to commit wire fraud and taking $100 million from various investors despite its business model failing. The SEC has alleged that the pair falsified documents to deceive investors and raise funds.
The company’s name being identical to the crypto fund manager has caused some confusion, with some posts on social media using Bitwise Asset Management’s logo while talking about Bitwise Industries. However, the crypto index fund manager clarified that the two are unrelated.
On Nov. 10, Bitwise Asset Management insisted in a statement that they have no affiliation with the company currently facing SEC charges. They wrote:
“San Francisco-based Bitwise Asset Management, Inc., the largest crypto index fund manager in America, has no relationship with, and has never had a relationship with, the now-defunct Bitwise Industries, a former technology company based in Fresno, California.”
Bitwise Asset Management offers various crypto-related products for investment, which includes Ethereum futures ETFs. In addition, the company is also one of the asset managers making an effort to get approval for a spot Bitcoin ETF. On the other hand, Bitwise Industries appears to be a defunct tech firm that has not worked with digital assets in any way.