The ATS, Public Private Execution Network (PPEX) announced the succesful completion of SEC registration this week. Now, PPEX can offer users the ability to trade exempted digital assets and other private securities from the protections of a regulated platform. The news demonstrates further competition in the sector, as well as, a more responsive approach by SEC regulators to the blockchain space.
According to company documentation, the PPEX ATS will offer a wide variety of specialized exempt securities. Exempt securities are attractive to investors for a couple of key reasons. For one, private equity products aren’t subject to the same disclosure and registration requirements as their sec-registered counterparts. In fact, it’s far more cost-effective to invest in exempt securities versus publicly-traded financial instruments.
Importantly, PPEX’s parent company is the broker-dealer North Capital Private Securities. The Salt Lake City-based North Capital Private Securities is a self-clearing broker-dealer. Notably, the firm offers escrow services for offerings under Reg D, Reg A+, Reg S, and Reg CF offerings. As a registered broker-dealer North Capital gained valuable insight into the mark and most importantly, the trust of regulators.
Discussing the project, North Capital CEO, Jim Dowd spoke on the main differences between PPEX and the current systems in place. He described how developers opted for a “ground-up approach” rather than attempting to modify the current platform. Additionally, Dowd touched on some of the advantages and disadvantages of investing in exempted securities.
Dowd spoke on how exempted securities cost much less than traditional securities. He explained that these savings equate to more opportunities for investors. Also, exempted securities settle in less time than traditional securities. This added flexibility and efficiency continue to help drive more interests in these unique financial instruments.
While the advantages of trading exempted securities are clear, there are also some negatives that come with these investments. Specifically, exempted securities markets are far less liquid than traditional markets. This non-liquidity can leave investors seeking additional exit strategies if their investment doesn’t meet their requirements in the expected time frame. Critically, this non-liquidity is the result of less participation from traditional investment firms.
Lack of Transparency
The main reason that large investment firms hesitate to enter the exempted securities markets is a lack of transparency. Remember, exempted securities have to disclose much less information regarding their company and operations. PPEX hopes to help bridge this gap through the use of blockchain technology.
Patience is Key
Surprisingly, PPEX’s parent company had completed FINRA’s membership application back in February. The platform had the approval to begin operations since the start of March when the SEC formally approved the ATS filing. Interestingly, PPEX decided to remain quiet regarding the accomplishment. This strategy allowed the platform to continue development in a timely manner.
According to reports, PPEX will function as a sort of hybrid system. The platform will adhere to many of the traditional securities regulations such as due diligence procedures, disclosure requirements, and other regulatory processes. In this way, PPEX will offer investors and regulators more protections than other ATSs currently in the market.
ATS Platforms Continue to Emerge
PPEX promises to deliver investors a unique opportunity to operate in the exempted securities sector with additional protections. The integration of blockchain technology enables platforms, such as this one, to provide users with more security and transparency than ever before. As such, you should expect to see more ATSs enter the market as the STO sector’s expansion reaches new heights in the coming months.
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