A look at the industry in 2021: the first newsletter of the year

For the week ending on January 10th, 2021

Happy New Year everyone! We hope you took time to rest during the holiday season and are ready for what is already shaping up to be a significant year for the security token and digital asset industry!

Even as early on in the year as it is, Q1 has started us off with regulatory developments and welcome additions to the fintech ecosystem!

This week also sees us wrapping up our issuance platform series as our final report, covering Polymath, is available in our research hub.

And for news from RedBlock, this first quarter will be filled with exciting developments, so stay tuned!

Now, onto the news…

1. Ukraine chooses Stellar on which to develop its CBDC

This newsletter kicks off with an important stride forward for Ukraine’s CBDC efforts, as it has chosen the Stellar blockchain on which to build its national digital currency. Ukraine wants to utilize a CBDC to the end of the development of a digital assets sector in the country. (Ledger Insights)

2. The US SEC is putting more trust in the digital asset ecosystem

Meanwhile, in the US, regulators show that they plan to allow broker-dealers to perform digital asset trading services.

More specifically, the SEC will allow “digital currency broker-dealers a period of five years without enforcement action if they can verify they have control over customers’ digital assets.” This move has been lauded by leaders in the industry because of the view that this signals an active willingness to facilitate the development of the United State’s digital asset industry. (CoinGeek)

3. US Banks and stablecoins

Possibly one of the most talked about signs that the US is ready to embrace the future of finance, was the news of recent regulatory clarity that was handed down from the OCC (Office of the Comptroller of the Currency).

The OCC’s letter, asserting that national banks could “‘use stablecoins to conduct payment activities and other bank-permissible functions’”, gives stablecoins similar infrastructure utility to that of SWIFT or ACH codes and sets the stage for a more integral role to be played by blockchain tech. (Bitcoin.com)

1. LCX increases its value proposition in Liechtenstein…

LCX has recently secured the necessary crypto-related licenses in Liechtenstein to allow it to operate as a “a regulated crypto exchange, digital asset custody provider, price oracle provider, digital asset compliance provider, smart-contract creator and token-offering platform”.

What makes this so powerful is the notion that LCX can now aid banks, who may go through Liechtenstein for their security token endeavors, as they are, according to CEO Monty Metzger, “‘the only token generator in the region.’” (Coindesk)

2. … and Smart Valor does a bit of the same

Digital assets platform, SMART VALOR, recently announced that it had received the proper licenses to operate as both a cryptocurrency exchange and custodian from the Liechtenstein Financial Market Authority.

This, a major achievement in Smart Valor’s mission to “build a decentralized marketplace for tokenized alternative investment backers by secure custody for cryptocurrency.” (Crowdfund Insider)

1. INX to list SolidBlock’s real-estate backed security tokens

Digital asset trading platform and token issuer, INX.co, recently announced that it is listing smart contract development and management platform, SolidBlock’s, real-estate backed security tokens on its platform.

This is the latest in a slate of strong listings that have and are to be added to INX’s platform. You can check out some examples of these listings in the source article, referenced at the end. (Crowdfund Insider)

That wraps it up for the highlights of the first week of 2021! Thank you for joining us for this year, and remember to invite others to come along with us, because this year is going to be quite the ride.

Until next week👋

References

Regulatory News

1. “Stellar to work with Ukraine on blockchain-based central bank digital currency”

2. “US regulator indicates broker-dealers could be allowed to trade in securities”

3. “Top US Banking Regulator: Banks Are Authorized to Use Public Blockchains and Stablecoins for Payment Activities”

Industry Updates

1. “LCX Exchange Gets Licensed in Liechtenstein to Help Banks Create Their Own Digital Assets”

2. “Switzerland-Based Smart Valor Secures Cryptocurrency Exchange & Custodian Licenses From Liechtenstein Financial Market Authority”

Investment and Financing

1. “Solid Block and INX Plan Listing of Real Estate Backed Securities Tokens”

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About RedBlock

RedBlock Inc is a digital investment and fintech firm leveraging blockchain technology for asset digitization and management, from issuance to secondary liquidity. Its global network of capital market participants, including issuers, broker-dealers, secondary exchanges, funds, liquidity providers and custodians, are supported by its end-to-end blockchain-powered asset management platform. RedBlock also manages an investment fund to support companies in its ecosystem that align with its investment thesis. With a growing track record and pipeline, the RedBlock team hails from top tier global investment banks, venture capital firms and blockchain technology companies.

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