Cryptocurrency exchange Coinbase Inc. began preparing for an initial public offering later this year or early next year, according to a report today from Reuters.

Citing three people familiar with the matter, Reuters says plans are still subject to change and the company is not yet registered with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. Coinbase is said to have had preliminary talks with investment banks and law firms for its potential float.

The exact form Coinbase might take to go public is subject to speculation. Discussions with the bank suggest the company is considering a traditional public offering, but that doesn’t necessarily rule out a direct listing at this point and the Reuters report notes that Coinbase is considering this option.

Direct listings, while remaining a niche way to go public, have slowly gained popularity among mature tech startups looking to avoid the costs involved in a traditional IPO. Palantir Inc. is reported to take this option later this year, following in the footsteps of Spotify Technology SA and Slack Technologies Inc.

Coinbase’s market capitalization at the time of its public offering is also uncertain. From his last venture capital round in 2018, Coinbase was valued at $ 8 billion, but since then it has grown steadily organically and through acquisitions.

Coinbase, as the largest registered cryptocurrency exchange in the United States, has been voracious in acquiring small startups, including blockchain-tracking startup Neutrino srl in February 2019, bitcoin custodian provider Xapo Inc. in August and the cryptocurrency brokerage startup backed by Peter Thiel Tagomi Systems Inc. in May.

If Coinbase continues with an IPO, it will be the first U.S. cryptocurrency exchange to go public in a major market. The main challenge for the company could be the United States Securities and Exchange Commission. Although apparently more generous to cryptocurrency companies and recent offerings – Arca’s US Treasury Fund approval July 6 for example, the SEC is always strict when it comes to everything cryptocurrency.

As its potential IPO nears, Coinbase has raised $ 547.3 million in venture capital, according to Crunchbase. Investors include Tiger Global Management, Y Combinator Continuity, Wellington Management, Andreessen Horowitz, PolychainSection 32, Balyasny Asset Management, Draper Associates, Battery Ventures, Greylock Partners, Tusk Ventures, Spark Capital, Bank Of Tokyo, USAA, DFJ, BlockChain Capital and the New York Stock Exchange.

Image: Coinbase

Since you are here …

Show your support for our mission with our one-click subscription to our YouTube channel (below). The more subscribers we have, the more YouTube will bring you relevant content on emerging companies and technologies. Thank you!

Support our mission: >>>>>> SIGN UP NOW >>>>>> to our YouTube channel.

… We would also like to tell you about our mission and how you can help us fulfill it. SiliconANGLE Media Inc.’s business model is based on the intrinsic value of content, not advertising. Unlike many online publications, we don’t have a paywall or banner ad because we want to keep our journalism open, without influence or the need to drive traffic.Journalism, reporting and commentary on Silicon ANGLE – as well as live, unscripted videos from our Silicon Valley studio and globe-trotting video teams at The cube – take a lot of hard work, time and money. Maintaining high quality requires the support of sponsors who align with our vision of ad-free journalistic content.

If you enjoy the news stories, video interviews, and other ad-free content here, please take a moment to view a sample of the video content supported by our sponsors, tweet your support, and keep coming back to Silicon ANGLE.