A regulated Swiss bank, Dukascopy, announced this Thursday they are to utilize ethereum’s public blockchain for an Initial Coin Offering (ICO) pending regulatory approval by the Swiss Financial Market Supervisory Authority.
The Swiss online bank says they will issue 20 billion Dukascoins with the aim of expanding their mobile banking operations.
They say anyone who signs up for a Mobile Current Account and/or their banking app Connect 911 messenger, will receive 5 Dukascoins for free. Anyone who refers them receives 5, while the bank itself keeps 10 Dukascoins.
Bank customers will then be able to freely transfer these tokens, just as they do with any other tokens. The bank itself will also provide an exchange of sorts for people who want to buy or sell the Dukascoins.
The bank further says they will sell, now and then, big batches of Dukascoins of 100,000 or more in a “fill or kill” manner, so bringing the tokens into circulation.
The above is hoped to be launched within three months, pending regulatory approval, with the bank stating they have completed the whitepaper and the technical specification.
In addition, they are to launch a stablecoin called Dukasnotes. These will be pegged to a fiat currency, but which one is not specified.
Thats because the note seems to be in the early stages, with the whitepaper not yet finished. It is planned to be launched after the tokens. They says:
“Dukascoins are designed as a crypto means of payment to be created in limited quantity to serve both as payment and speculation means. Dukascoins are expected to gain in value due to limited supply.
Their initial purpose is to reward new clients in a promotional plan aiming at popularizing the Dukascopy Connect 911 messenger and associated Mobile Current Accounts of Dukascopy to a very wide extent.”
This is the very first bank to ICO and it may well be one of the first established company to do so, with the bank currently having 300 employees.
According to Wikipedia, the bank is headquartered in Geneva, with “offices in Riga, Kiev, Moscow, Kuala Lumpur, Hong Kong, Shanghai, Dubai and Tokyo.”
Making it a global bank which was founded in 2004 with this ICO seemingly being an embrace of blockchain tech and perhaps a signal of their openness to blockchain/crypto companies which may need a bank account.
Switzerland itself has been very accommodative of cryptos with Zug establishing itself as a Crypto Valley and a hot spot for ICOs.
Whether the regulator will give the green-light, however, remains to be seen, but if they do then Switzerland will host the first bank in the world to ICO.