“This is the beginning of a new era for capital markets infrastructures. For us it is abundantly clear that much of what is going on in the digital space is here to stay and will define the future of our industry.”
So said today Jos Dijsselhof, CEO of SIX, the company that owns and manages Switzerland’s stock exchange.
The trading institution announced they are building “a fully integrated trading, settlement and custody infrastructure for digital assets.”
They say the roll-out will begin around the middle of next year and its services will be based on blockchain technology. In a statement they say:
“The service will provide a safe environment for issuing and trading digital assets, and enable the tokenization of existing securities and non-bankable assets to make previously untradeable assets tradeable.”
This is the second national stock exchange to announce they are to launch crypto trading, with the first being Germany’s second biggest stock exchange which will offer bitcoin, ethereum, litecoin and ripple trading from September.
The SIX Swiss Exchange is the country’s main exchange, owned by some 127 banks, generating a yearly revenue of $2 billion.
“The launch of a fully regulated crypto exchange highlights Switzerland’s forward-thinking approach to digital assets and cryptocurrencies,” says Shane Brett, Co-founder and CEO of GECKO Governance which provides ICO compliance services, before adding:
“Such dynamism and willingness by institutional actors to engage with this emerging economy will hugely benefit the global blockchain ecosystem, particularly once other nations take similar actions.”
Switzerland has ambitions to become a crypto-nation, with the government supporting the organic establishment of the Crypto Valley in fierce competition with London for the Fintech crown.
In Zug, where the ethereum foundation is based and others, you can pay for some of the local government services in crypto.
More importantly perhaps, they’ve set-up a high level working group to develop recommendations on how banks should deal with blockchain companies.
The addition of the stock exchange now as a place where you can trade what sounds like all sorts of assets, including tokenized stocks and shares, may make the jurisdiction even more appealing for blockchain technologies, especially if they do address crytonian’s complaints in regards to what some say are anti-competitive practices by banks in often failing to offer banking services to blockchain companies.