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A Detailed Look at Bakkt – Why All the Hype?

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Bakkt - A detailed look

If you follow the cryptospace, undoubtedly you have heard people discussing Bakkt. The platform continues to make headlines and there is a good reason for all this hype. Aside from providing enterprise-level digital asset storage, the platform seeks to be among the first to offer Bitcoin futures.

The Bakkt platform is one of the most highly anticipated projects in the crypto space and its easy to see why. For one, the owner of the New York Stock Exchange, ICE (Intercontinental Exchange Inc.), is the developers of the project. Their experience and vast network helps to navigate the intricate licensing requirements that the project must first meet. Basically, Bakkt has the clout to make their unique products a reality.

Bakkt Crypto-Storage

As the cryptomarket expands and large scale investment firm enter the space, there is a growing demand for both of these services. Traditional investment firms need to know that their crypto is not only stored safely but insured against theft and other nefarious acts. At its core, the platform provides this security to its users.

Crypto Thievery

Crypto Thefts are on the rise. One recently published study revealing that over $1.7 billion in crypto was stolen in 2018 alone. Furthermore, over $356 million in crypto was stolen this year so far. Consequently, digital asset storage firms such as Bakkt continue to see rising interests in their services.

Bitcoin Futures

Despite repeated delays, Bakkt continues to push for Bitcoin futures. Futures are agreements to purchase a said asset for an agreed upon price at a later date. What makes Bitcoin futures so critical to the space is the fact that large scale investment firms can offer the product to their clients without offering Bitcoin directly. These traditional investment firms are eager to enter the space but require more regulations before they can offer crypto-related products to their clients.

Bakkt - A Detailed Look

Bakkt via Twitter

Bitcoin Futures Strategy

Bakkt will incorporate a dual futures contract strategy. The first futures contract will be daily settlement Bitcoin futures. This agreement allows investors to interact in a “same-day” market. This product allows day traders to get in on the futures action. The second product that the firm seeks to integrate is monthly Bitcoins futures. Monthly futures allow investors to trade across a forward moving pricing curve.

ICE Monitoring

In order to make its concept a reality, Bakkt incorporates a number of traditional financial tools. These tools are meant to detect and prevent market abuse and manipulation. Both are huge concerns for the current cryptomarket. Also, all contracts will be margined by ICE clear US and a proprietary custodial service will ensure the compliance of all futures throughout their lifecycle.

A Long Road

Bakkt first announced plans to issue Bitcoin futures back in August 2018. The firm submitted its proposal to the US Commodities Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) in December. The firm also submitted an exemption request around the same time. The exemption, if approved, allows Bakkt to custody the Bitcoins used to settle its futures contracts.

Interestingly, the company has sat in legal limbo since that time. Government officials cited a couple of reasons for the delay. These reasons include the government shutdown which started on December 22, 2018, and lasted almost five weeks. Unfortunately, the shutdown left the CFTC backlogged with piles of work and other “high-priority” projects.

To make matters worse, analysts pointed out that the CFTF needs to still release Bakkt’s proposal for public review. This step can take over thirty-days and could delay Bakkt’s previously announced July release date. Discussing the delays, the director of the CFTF, Amir Zaidi quickly pointed out that the analysis process for a crypto-related future is much different than traditional assets of the same class.

Bakkt that Thing Up

Bakkt appears to have its strategy in line and at this point, you can expect to see Bitcoin futures coming to an exchange near you. The anticipation surrounding this project is admirable. Additionally, Bitcoin traders expect a nice price pump once this product enters the market. For now, the crypto community awaits for Bakkt’s final approval.

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David Hamilton is a full-time journalist and a long-time bitcoinist. He specializes in writing articles on the blockchain. His articles have been published in multiple bitcoin publications including Bitcoinlightning.com

Security Token News

Libra to Utilize KoreConX in Upcoming Digital Security Offering

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Libra to Utilize KoreConX in Upcoming Digital Security Offering

African DSO

KoreConX has recently announced that they have been chosen by Libra Project to host an upcoming digital security offering.

This event will see Libra Project raise capital for their green initiative. Primarily, Libra Project is working to develop renewable energy sources, with the goal of bringing 1st world amenities, such as reliable power, to 100 million humans.

This endeavour represents the first fully compliant DSO to target, and be hosted, within Africa and the Middle East – also the primary regions in which the project can affect the most change.

Commentary

In making the announcement of their partnership, the CEO of each, KoreConX and Libra, took the time to comment. The following is what each had to say on the matter.

Hans Fraikin, CEO and Cofounder of Libra Project, stated,

“Libra Project is thrilled to enter into this new partnership with KoreConX…Their world-class digital securities asset management protocol will accelerate our plan to become the first fully compliant DSO (digital security offering) in the Middle East and Africa. Ultimately, this partnership supports Libra Project’s mission of democratizing access to impact investments all the while bringing clean energy to hundreds of millions of people in Asia and Africa.”          

Oscar Jofre, CEO and Cofounder of KoreConX, stated,

“The Middle East is a very important region for us. We want the regulators and companies in the Middle East to know that there is a provider that does things the right way and will meet their regulatory obligations. We are truly glad that more and more companies are starting to realize the transformation that comes with blockchain, and the ways it can simplify doing business.”

Libra Project

Libra Project is a U.K based company, operating out of London. The company maintains satellite offices in a variety of locations, including Abu Dhabi. Libra Project is actively developing their own service, known as Blockchange. This will act as a bridging platform, connecting green initiatives start-ups with interested investors.

Company operations are overseen by CEO, Hans Fraikin.

KoreConX

KoreConX is a New York based company, which was founded in 2016. Through their KorePartners Ecosystem, and in-house services, this young company is able to offer clients a comprehensive digital securities issuance platform.

Company operations are overseen by CEO, Oscar Jofre.

In Other News

Libra represents a growing trend surrounding ‘green’ projects. Another company which is utilizing blockchain to tackle global issues is Almond. Not only did we recently detail their company, but we had the pleasure of interviewing their CEO. Check out the following articles to learn more about Almond, and what they are doing to better the world.

Almond – Be the Chance the Earth Needs

Interview Series – Almond CEO, Oliver Bolton

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Security Token News

Securitize DS Token Protocol goes Open Source

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Securitze Goes Open Source on DS Token

The security token issuance platform, Securitize raised eyebrows amongst the cryptocommunity this week after releasing its DS Token code to the public. The move goes along with the crypto sectors long-held stance of open-source projects. Now, programmers from across the globe have a chance to test and advance the platform’s core coding.

News of Securitize’s decision spread quickly after the announcement was made at Coindesk’s latest Consensus 2019 conference. Consensus is one of the largest blockchain conferences in the world. Securitize used the hugely popular seminar to ensure their announcement received the proper attention and publicity the company desired.

A Proven Standard

Discussing the decision, Securitize co-founder and CEO,Carlos Domingo first explained how Securitizes’ Digital Securities Protocol proved itself over the last year. He then took a moment to explain why the decision opens many doors for the company.

Securitize via Homepage

Securitize via Homepage

Domingo sees a future where developers are now able to create and test Dapps based on the Digital Securities Protocol (DS). Dapps are a crucial component of any token standards in the marketplace. As a result, analysts continually point out that the Dapps propel a project forward.

Dapps are Important

For example, Ethereum is by far the most widely used platform to launch security tokens. In most instances, security tokens launch as a variant to the ERC-20 protocol. The main difference being that these tokens also include the necessary regulatory compliance mechanisms found in security tokens. Likewise, ERC-based Dapps are among the most prevalent in the market.

Now Securitize wants to capture some of the excitement and added functionality that Dapp developers bring to the table. Domingo commented on the need to provide these developers with a viable venue to actually make a difference with the code.

In a company blog post, Securitize elaborates on this theory. Here, Securitize states the importance of their strategy. Basically, the firm spent the last year perfecting their coding and proving that it is reliable enough for real-world use. Now, the DS protocol is ready to go to the next level.

DS Token Protocol

According to the blog post, the goal of the DS protocol is to provide the “proper Digital ownership Architecture to address all aspects of the digital securities lifecycle.” Company officials now hope that the cryptocommunity will step up and really put the DS protocol to the test.

DS Token Code

The newly released coding includes five main interfaces in which developers can interact, test, and build on the coding. The first component is the DSServiceConsumerInterface. This portion of the coding is what enables the other component to interact in a seamless fashion.

Next, the DSTokenInterface is the actual token protocol. As expected, the coding shares many aspects of the ERC-20 protocol but with some key differences. These upgrades include investor-centric balances.

The DSTrustServiceInterface is where developers can assign trust roles in the context of the DS token. This is how developers are able to authorize high-level users and developers within the platform.

A DSRegistryServicesInterface is used to define the Registry Service of the tokens. This is where the token holds all relevant ownership information. Consequently, this section is a critical component when discussing token compliance.

Finally, the DSComplianceServiceInterface is how tokens are able to continually check to ensure compliance throughout its lifecycle. Secondary compliance concerns are a major issue in the security token sector. This protocol is what enables DS tokens to remain within the legal guidelines of digital securities. Importantly, this protocol plays a major role in secondary market compliance as well.

Securitize Steps up its Game

The decision to go open-source is a smart one on the part of Securitize. The crypto sector was built on open-source projects such as Bitcoin and Ethereum. Securitize is now in line to continue this legacy and push its DS token protocol to new heights.

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Security Token News

DigiMax Designated ‘Exempt Market Dealer’ by OSC

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DigiMax Designated 'Exempt Market Dealer' by OSC

Designation Granted

DigiMax has recently announced that they have successfully been granted a designation as an ‘exempt market dealer’.

This designation, doled out by the Ontario Securities Commission, will allow for DigiMax to issue digital securities on behalf of their client, without the need for a prospectus. As a result, DigiMax will see their advisory, and issuance platform, become more flexible, providing client easier access to capital.

Exempt Market Dealer

For the majority of companies issuing securities within Canada, a prospectus is needed to remain regulatory compliant. There, however, exists a subset within capital markets, which allows for companies to forgo this step. This subset is known as an exempt market, and typically indicates that less protective measures are put in place for companies granted exempt status.

For more information on exempt markets, and those taking part, click HERE.

Prospectus

A prospectus is a form of documentation which is typically required by regulatory bodies, such as the Ontario Securities Commission. The documentation consists of a thorough outlining and description of a companies planned actions, pertaining to a capital generation event.

Commentary

In making their announcement, DigiMax CEO, Chris Carl, took the time to comment. The following is what he had to say on the matter.

“We are very excited to have been granted registration as an EMD in the jurisdiction of Ontario in Canada…This registration allows us to serve Ontario based corporations and investors as an exempt market dealer in various forms of funding, and to market such offerings to institutional or accredited investors. Working with our growing network of similarly registered dealers in other countries, DigiMax Global Solutions is well on its way to becoming the leader of a global syndicate of dealers able to assist companies to raise capital around the world.”

DigiMax

DigiMax is a Canadian company operating out of Toronto, Ontario. Since operations were launched in 2017, DigiMax has developed a platform which facilitates capital generation events in the form of digital security offerings.

Company operations are overseen by CEO, Chris Carl.

Ontario Securities Commission

The Ontario Securities Commission (OSC), is a government run, regulatory body, which oversees the enforcement of various acts. Each of which has been designed to protect investors through the creation of fair and honest markets.

In Other News

The digital securities sector has seen various large developments as of late. We have seen huge conglomerates make their entrance, while existing industry participants hone their platforms and services. Here are a few noteworthy events from recent weeks.

Calibra – A Product of Facebook, Built on Two Tokens

BnkToTheFuture to Utilize Altcoin.io for Security Token Exchange

Coinbase Custody Adds Support for Digital Security ‘BCAP’

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