As the SEC vs. Ripple ruling looms, Paul Grewal said it is possible Coinbase will relist the XRP token.
Speaking to Tony Edward — host of the Thinking Crypto YouTube channel — Grewal said there are several legal uncertainties to give a definitive answer on relisting.
The U.S. securities regulator alleged Ripple had sold unregistered securities (in the XRP token) to the tune of $1.3 billion. A case was filed again the company, Chairman Chris Larsen, and CEO Brad Garlinghouse in December 2020.
Will Coinbase relist XRP?
On Jan. 19, 2021, Coinbase delisted XRP in response to the SEC’s lawsuit against Ripple. Other crypto entities also followed suit, including Bitwise and Bitstamp, among others.
Coinbase said the delisting decision was informed by its Digital Assets Framework policy — which assesses factors such as securities compliance.
When quizzed about the delisting, Grewal said it is standard company policy to regularly evaluate assets in line with learning new information. Despite the somewhat diplomatic response, he acknowledged that the situation has been a source of frustration for some XRP holders.
Commenting on the state of the litigation, Grewal said Ripple’s defense team has done well in challenging the SEC’s argument. He added that he became so convinced by those efforts it was motivation enough for Coinbase to file its own brief supporting Ripple’s case.
“A masterful job of pushing the SEC and raising serious questions about the SEC’s entire theory that undergirds that case.”
When asked if Coinbase would relist XRP, Grewal said, “it’s possible,” However, that depends on the outcome of the litigation; specifically the basis for the ruling — the judge’s legal reasoning, an assessment of whether an appeals court would support relisting,
“A lot is going to depend on the particulars of how that court rules. I know that’s not going to be terribly satisfying to some, but we do a responsibility as a publicly listed company to tread carefully…”
How Grewal sees the SEC vs. Ripple lawsuit playing out
The SEC vs. Ripple case has put the spotlight on inconsistencies in the agency’s policies and approach to regulating.
For example, Ripple’s fair notice defense maintained that the XRP token is similar to Bitcoin and Ethereum, and without notification to the contrary, the defendants had no reason to believe they breached securities laws.
In other words, if BTC and ETH are not securities, and there is no notice of XRP being any different, then it follows the defendant did not knowingly breach securities laws