Crypto advocates interests were sparked this week after the Depository Trust & Clearing Corporation (DTCC) released a whitepaper describing fair security token business practices. The whitepaper primarily focuses on post-trade concerns. The release of this document highlights the growing interests of investors in tokenized securities.
The paper lays out a concise market infrastructure in which security tokens must operate within the same rules as traditional securities. While security tokens are subject to the same regulations up to the initial trade, post-trade regulations are lax and in many instances, non-existent. The DTCC wants all players in the arena to operate in the same manner.
The DTCC proposes an identifiable governance structure to institute these regulations. The paper lays out seven areas of concern which the firm believes are critical in protecting investors and facilitating market growth.
- Demonstrable Legal Basis – All distributed ledger platforms must have clear and concise guidelines surrounding any financial products offered.
- Identifiable Governance Structure – Platforms offering security tokens must have appropriate governance support systems in place. These systems provide risk management.
- Identifiable Procedures and Systems to Ensure Settlement Finality – All security tokens are required to provide clear settlement of all transactions.
- Security Token Issuance, Custody, and Asset Servicing – Security tokens should have safety control measures in place to mitigate the chance of loss. These measures should include internal controls and robust accounting practices.
- Resilience – All security tokens must prove that they can operate securely in the marketplace.
- Required Record Keeping – All security token platforms must be able to secure their client’s information. Additionally, this information needs to be available to regulators upon request.
The DTCC is a US-based firm that provides financial markets with clearing and settlement services. Originally, the DTCC’s task involved updating the aging securities token processes in use during the 1970s and prior. During these times brokers hand to physically exchange certificates. As you could imagine the process was expensive and time-consuming. Today, the DTCC performs securities exchanges on behalf of investors. The firm is a central securities depositary that provides custodial services to the global financial markets.
As the central securities depository, the company holds incredible sway in the market. To give you an idea of just how large the firm is, in 2011 DTCC settled $1.7 quadrillion in transactions in the US alone. The company works with regulators from across the globe to help quell security concerns in the market.
Today, the DTCC works with lawmakers, regulators, and key stakeholders in the US, Asia, Australia, and Europe. The company is an advocate for sound public policy. In the past, the DTCC collaborated on both national and local financial regulations.
DTCC and Global Regulations
You can expect that these latest recommendations influence the future regulations of many nations moving forward. Consequently, these guidelines could create momentum for global security token regulations in the near future. For now, many governments are still clueless on how to handle the digitization of the economy.
Draper Goren Holm Adds Rodney Sampson as Venture Partner
The Los Angeles-based venture firm, Draper Goren Holm announced the addition of well-known Philanthropist Rodney Sampson this week. According to reports, Sampson is now a venture partner in the firm. As such, he will play a key role in identifying projects of interest to the group moving forward. The news showcases the further expansion of the US-blockchain sector, and a desire by Draper Goren Holm to remain ahead of the curve in terms of blockchain integration.
Draper Goren Holm
The investment firm of Draper Goren Holm specializes in accelerating and incubating early-stage blockchain and fintech startups. Currently, the firm handles over 65 partnerships with top venture capital funds, media companies, and service providers in the sector. Notably, the firm is named after its three primaries – Tim Draper, Alon Goren, and Josef Holm. Together, this triad is able to catapult innovative tech projects into stardom.
The addition of Rodney Sampson will only strengthen Draper Goren Holm’s positioning in the market. Sampson is one of the most recognized investors in the market. Much of his recognition comes from his astounding investment history and the events he hosts yearly. Importantly, Sampson participates in around 300 events per year. Consequently, he regularly works closely as an advisor to high growth startups and seed-stage venture funds.
Rodney Sampson Has the Experience to Excel
As one of his early business ventures, Sampson co-founded, built, and sold Multicast Media Technologies for $24 million in 2010. Additionally, he retains a partnership and is the largest minority LP at TechSquare Labs which is valued at over $1.5 billion. Sampson is also the Executive Chairman of OHUB and a Nonresident Senior Fellow at the leading inclusive ecosystem building platform – The Brookings Institution.
How the Team Met
Not surprisingly, these individuals didn’t decide to join forces out of pure chance. Sampson met Alon Goren and Josef Holm at a crowdfunding event in Las Vegas nearly a decade ago. Tim Draper also knew Sampson from the time they both judged a pitch competition for 43North in Buffalo. Importantly, Sampson believes the team wasn’t brought together by accident. He believes that together, they can work to “solve our planet and society’s hardest challenges.”
Discussing the important addition, Draper Goren Holm’s Founding Partner, Goren spoke on how Sampson will become a key contributor to the team’s unified efforts. He commended Sampson on an impressive career and his “grit, deep industry insight, and entrepreneurial spirit.” Finally, he discussed how the team will one day build the next generation blockchain hub in Los Angeles.
Goren’s thoughts were echoed by the other Founding Partners of Draper Goren Holm. Specifically, Holm spoke on Sampson’s new role in the firm. He states that Sampson will help the group scout out industry talent. In this way, the firm seeks to leverage Sampson’s decades of experience to ensure only the best and brightest concepts make it to the table.
The American venture capital investor Tim Draper was born on June 11, 1958, to a long line of venture capitalists. Perhaps it was this early start that allowed him to become one of the most successful venture capitalists in the world. His most prominent investments include some of the best-known companies in the world. Draper helped start Baidu, Hotmail, Skype, Tesla, SpaceX, AngelList, SolarCity, Twitter, DocuSign, Coinbase, Ancestry.com, Twitch, Cruise Automation, just to name a few.
Tim Draper Crypto
Draper has been involved with blockchain technology since the very beginning. In early 2014, Draper started to acquire Bitcoin in small batches. The price was around $2 at that time. Aside from his early savings, Draper also received international media coverage when he purchased the Bitcoin confiscated during the Silk Road trial by US Marshalls. According to reports, he purchased 40,000 Bitcoins at around $632 apiece.
Alon Goren is another well-known investor in the market. His career includes becoming the CEO and Co-founder of InvestedIn. Importantly, the platform specializes in social fundraising and crowdfunding platforms. Prior to founding InvestedIn, Alon held multiple high-ranking positions at tech giants such as IMDB and MySpace.
Importantly Goran is a strong advocate for tokenization. Especially in regards to securities. In the past, he hasn’t been shy about what he considers antiquated securities laws. In a recent interview, he explained that “people operating in good faith” need more flexibility to develop the market properly.
Not surprisingly, Josef Holm is also a leader in the crowdfunding industry. He has over 17 years of start-up, business development, digital marketing, and social marketing experience. Notably, he co-founded and is the CEO of Tubestart.com. The platform is a fan-supported content development platform. In 2014, he founded Krowdster.co. This platform was the first to introduce to the market crowdfunding campaign analytics, optimization, and promotion software based on big data, machine learning systems and predictive analytics.
Draper Goren Holm
Draper Goren Holm entered the market in August 2018. Originally founded by Alon Goren and Josef Holm, the company added Tim Draper only months after its start. The company focuses on incubating and accelerating early-stage blockchain startups. As such, the company helped launch Totle, Ownera, Innovesta, LunarCrush, Degens, Giftz, Vertalo, Coinsquad, CasperLabs, Element Zero, DeFi Money Market, to name a few.
Additionally, the firm hosts some of the most important summits of the year. These summits include CIS, the Security Token Summit, and the LA Blockchain Summit. Importantly, the CIS conference was one of the firm’s first ventures. Today, it is the largest blockchain conference on the West Coast.
Draper Goren Holm – The Men Behind The Magic
You can expect to continue to see innovative and disruptive technologies receive a boast from this firm. Their unmatched experience, coupled with a unique market outlook, is what keeps Draper Goren Holm one step ahead of the competition. Sampson is no stranger to the fast-paced tech capitalist world. His experience is sure to prove valuable as the group seeks to push blockchain adoption to the masses. For now, the cryptocommunity awaits the firm’s net major move.
EUR/USD Forex Market Weakening as Virus Spread Continues
• Signs of Strength in Previous Days Removed
• USD Position as Safe Haven of Choice Remains
• Oil Also at Decade Low as Impasse Continues
The Euro has faced a challenging start to the week as it stalls after record rallies last week to regain a foothold against the Dollar. The market confidence again seemingly shaken by the continued spread of COVID-19 across the bloc and the possible lack of a cohesive plan to stimulate the economies of the key nations. The USD has again gained on being the destination of choice for worried traders, while oil markets continue to plummet to new lows.
Euro Rally Looks to be Discontinued
The currency had rebounded quite well from the turmoil of recent weeks to post record gains last week. This has stalled at the $1.11 mark and dropped back almost 1% at the time of writing. This has been largely pushed by the ramp up in cases reported by Germany, the largest economy of the Union, and similar continued struggles in both France, and Spain.
The market sentiment here has also certainly not been helped by disagreement between countries about how they should deal with the economic impact of the crisis. There have been much needed injections into the markets of almost all countries in the EU, and multiple joint efforts to ensure the people have the emergency equipment and other things they need. Then came the question on how it should be paid for. This laid bare a division between several of the nations which still has not been clearly resolved.
USD Improving Again as Markets Panic
The balance of this pair will also have been impacted by the influx of traders moving back toward the USD. This may be seen as a retreat of sorts, with the confidence that was starting to grow toward the mid-point of last week receiving a knock back.
The only significant data to come out of the US today is that regarding February pending home sales. This, in combination with the expected drop back in major markets at the sounding of the opening bell, all spells a backward step for the country in lockdown. The market has not responded to various attempts at stimulation and it looks as though traders will remain steadfast in the USD for the early part of the week at least.
Oil Face-Off Continues as Price Hits New Lows
Amid the continuing coronavirus chaos, Russia and Saudi Arabia continue their standoff in the oil price war. This, at an already economically uncertain time has done the economy no favors. Crude Oil stands at the lowest point since 2002 at the time of writing. There also appears to be no breakthrough in sight.
With both nations refusing to budge, and Saudi Arabia signaling an intention to flood the market at a time when demand is already at rock bottom, there may well be further for these prices to fall before any positive progress is seen. This in turn is sure to be felt in the forex market, particularly with the Canadian Dollar which is heavily linked to oil prices.
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Telegram Investors Ready to Take Refunds amid Covid-19 Pandemic
According to multiple sources, the number of major Telegram ICO investors ready to accept refunds has skyrocketed. Originally, investors wanted a 100% refund of their funds. Unfortunately, the Covid-19 epidemic has caused many to switch their stance over to settle at a fraction of the funds paid into the token.
One report listed 10 major investors in Telegram’s blockchain project as ready to take what they can get immediately. Importantly, the Telegram ICO raised $1.7 billion from a variety of international investors. Up until this week, investors seemed ready to battle for a full refund. Now, given the state of uncertainty all the markets face, investors revealed they are ok with a 72% refund. Notably, Telegram stated that 5- 7%% of the funds were already spent on the development process in the intervening months.
Not Enough to Appease Investors in a Bull Market
Notably, back in October 2019, the firm offered 77% of invested funds back as refunds for the project. At the time, investors chose to reject the offer and agreed to extend the deadline for issuing the tokens to April 2020. The market was strong and most investors revealed a desire to receive tokens over refunds. However, these tokens never issued.
Telegrams Difficulties Continue
Telegram’s problems arose from their record-breaking ICO. The crowdfunding campaign came under investigation by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission last year. Regulators claim that Telegram violated securities laws when it illegally sold securities. In addition to the legal issues, the platform promised to deliver GRAM token to initial buyers before November of 2019. Unfortunately, the SEC blocked the company from completing this task just two weeks before the scheduled launch.
SEC Files Injunction – Telegram
At that time, the SEC filed an emergency action to halt the launch of the TON blockchain and GRAM token. Shortly following this decision, regulators obtained a restraining order against the company. On top of the SEC infractions, a federal court in New York ruled against Telegram this week. The court found that issuing the Gram tokens would constitute a violation of securities laws. Specifically, a judge of the Southern District of New York instituted a preliminary injunction. This injunction claimed that Telegram failed to register its ICO. Consequently, the firm violated the registration provisions of the Securities Act of 1933.
Market Speaks on the Changes
Speaking on the new developments, Head of Russian digital currency investment firm Hash CIB, Yakov Barinsky explained how the attitude of most investors changed recently. He stated that investors accepted the new refund conditions after the market collapsed. Currently, the entire global economy is in a state of stagnation.
Telegram Faces Uphill Fight
The hugely-popular messaging app became a global leader in the sector through a combination of an easy-to-use interface and advanced features. Of these features, Telegram’s use of end-to-end encryption is best known. In the past, this feature received heavy government scrutiny as it prevented their surveillance efforts.
Today, Telegram finds itself in the middle of a hard-fought court battle and a global epidemic that halted economic activity across the board. Unfortunately for the TON blockchain project, this perfect storm could prove as a death blow to the firm’s blockchain aspirations. For now, Telegram seeks clarification on the rulings.