The Millbrook Accord
Taking place in Queenstown, New Zealand, was the recent Blockchain South Leadership Summit. This summit was hosted at the Millbrook Resort, and led to the formation of what is being called the Millbrook Accord.
The Millbrook Accord is a title which represents a group of companies working together to advance services surrounding the digital securities industry. While current members totalling 12, the number of participants will surely grow with time.
Founding members of the accord are as follows,
- Gibraltar Stock Exchange
- Hyperlink Capital
- Blockchain Labs
- Alchemist Ventures
- Global Advisors
Verified Token Framework
Representing some of the leading figures within the sector today, the accord has first tasked themselves with creating industry standards. This will be known as the ‘Verified Token Framework’.
The purpose of this framework is to establish a set of standards and guidelines. This will allow present and future digital security issuances to ensure, not only regulatory compliance, but interoperability among platforms. This framework will take shape through a democratic environment among Millbrook Accord members.
Per the VTF website, ‘The Verified Token Framework introduces standards and procedures that can be seamlessly utilized by Token Issuers to ensure that their Security Tokens comply with worldwide transfer restrictions, thus opening up a global pool of Security Token liquidity.’
For those interested in learning more about the VTF, be sure to check out their whitepaper HERE.
While each member of the Millbrook Accord brings their own unique expertise and resources, NEM is an interesting participant.
While, to date, a select few companies have created their own security token protocols, the vast majority rely upon variations of the ERC-20 standard. This means that although executed in a unique manner, these tokens are still based off of the Ethereum blockchain.
Through the addition of NEM, the Millbrook accord introduces a leading blockchain platform. This marks the first time that another platform will be used in such a manner, stressing the importance of interoperability. No other framework has yet to incorporate multiple blockchains.
NEM is a promising platform with adoption seen on varying levels worldwide. Rather than being a variation of another project (aka ‘fork’), NEM was built from the ground up to be as efficient, and versatile as possible.
Quotes on the Matter
To date, one of the largest names in the industry is that of tZero. A product of crypto enthusiast, Patrick Byrne, tZero has the resources and clout to see through the development of the aforementioned framework.
tZero CEO, Saum Noursalehi, commented, “In order for the security token movement to grow, companies need to agree on an unbiased standard. The Verified Token Frameworkis a step toward ensuring that digital assets are interoperable and that the unique challenges presented by security tokens are addressed.”
Meanwhile, Blockchain Token Association Chairman, Jeff Pulver, commented,“In the Voice over Internet Protocol era, we invited industry leaders to bring their production-ready code to quarterly bake-offs, where developers sought to make their code interoperable. The result was a free and open source set of standards, which ultimately led to interoperability of services. We believe a similar collaborative approach to technological advancement will assist in the acceleration of blockchain adoption and the maturation of the global security tokens ecosystem.”
Archax Gears up for Launch with Quod Financial
Today, a forth coming digital securities exchange, Archax, has announced a partnership with Quod Financial. This pairing will see Archax turn to Quod Financial for various services, ranging from smart-order routing, trade automation, to order management and more.
These services are made available through integration with Quod Financial’s ‘Adaptive Execution Platform’. Capabilities made possible through this platform will allow for Archax to effectively deliver their product to institutional investors this coming year. If they achieve this goal, Archax will become – with the help of Quod Financial – one of the first offerings of its type seen in the industry.
In their press release, representatives from both companies took the time to elaborate on the development.
“Archax will be the first venue to bring digital asset trading into the mainstream financial community. Existing crypto venues have been primarily retail driven, and so it has been incredibly challenging for our buy-side and sell-side clients to include any form of blockchain-based instruments in their portfolios as they have lacked a regulated and stable venue. Given the rigorous selection process, we are proud to have been selected for this market-changing project to bring both digital assets as well as our data-driven execution intelligence to a wider audience.”
“We wanted to find a best-of-breed partner with an established and proven trading platform used by both the buy-side and sell-side. And one that was ready to handle the complexities of digital assets. Quod’s open, scalable and robust platform fitted the bill perfectly and we are happy to be able to offer it to clients as one of the ways of accessing our exchange…A key decision when evaluating technology providers from the traditional world was to find a platform that could be fully customised to support the new and developing security token space. Quod’s design, using industry standard architecture, allows easier customisation when required. That, coupled with their experience of handling high throughput trading for many tier-one banks and an array of other established regulated clients, made them an ideal partner.”
Quod Financial is an established company specializing in capital markets. Since their launch in 2004, the company has expanded from London to maintaining offices in New York, Paris, Hong Kong, and Dubai.
Company operations are overseen by CEO, Ali Pichvai.
This London based company was founded in 2018 by Graham Rodford, Matthew Pollard, and Andrew Flatt. The company is aiming for a 2019 launch of their platform, designed to act as an exchange for digital securities.
In Other News
Archax, in particular, has found themselves in our news feed various times in past months. They have had an impressive development period, resulting in investments from SPiCE VC among others. Check out the articles below to learn a little more about Archax.
seriesOne to Utilize ST-20 Standard by Polymath
Various companies have made announcements detailing intended usage of token standards lately. As the development of various crowdfunding platforms in the digital securities sector continues, the time has come for many to choose what they feel is the most promising standard. With this in mind, seriesOne has just announced that they have partnered with Polymath.
This partnership will see seriesOne utilize the ST-20 token standard to issue and manage digital securities. The ST-20 protocol is based off of the Ethereum blockchain, and will allow for seriesOne to maintain compliance with global regulations governing the industry.
The Future is ST-20
For seriesOne, it was a simple choice to settle on ST-20. This token standard was one of the first to be developed specifically with digital securities in mind. As such, Polymath has had more time than most to develop, hone, and market their offering. This effort has seen the standard adopted by various companies, with seriesOne being the most recent.
In their press release, the CEOs of each company took the time to express their thoughts on the announced partnership.
“Investors around the world trust Polymath, which was fundamental to our decision to work together…We are confident that working with the Polymath team using the ST-20 protocol will enhance the process of raising capital on our platform.”
“Polymath is proud to work with innovative partners like seriesOne, who has fulfilled a specific demand for a turnkey financing portal for any fundraising process…We are thrilled to be the chosen technology standard for the seriesOne platform, and we look forward to demonstrating yet again how industry can work together to set a standard for creating and managing a successful Security Token Offering (STO).”
seriesOne is a crowdfunding platform, which specializes in the issuance, distribution, and management of digital securities. Through their platform, issuers are able to effectively, and efficiently, host security token offerings. The company is based out of Miami, and was founded in 2013.
Polymath is a Canadian company, which maintains headquarters in Toronto. The company was established in 2017, and is spearheaded by CEO, Kevin North.
To date, Polymath and their token standards remain one of the most adopted solutions in the young world of digital securities. Their own utility token is available for trading on various industry leading cryptocurrency exchanges such as Poloniex and Bittrex.
In Other News
Each of these companies discussed here today have found their way into our headlines in recent months. For a look at what they have been up to recently, make sure to check out the few articles listed below!
Assurely presents the CrowdProtector
In a recent announcement, Assurely and AXA XL have indicated they are teaming up. The result of this partnership is the launch of the CrowdProtector insurance service.
In this relationship, AXA XL provides the insurance, while Assurely has developed the platform to deliver this service within the blockchain industry.
CrowdProtector is a service that was designed by Assurely, with the intent to provide all participants in crowdfunding events with insurance. The crowdfunding events that this product is tailored towards includes the increasingly popular, STO.
The product works on two main fronts.
- Protect the issuer
- Ensures protection from potential lawsuits brought forth by disgruntled investors
- Protect the investor
- Ensures issuers remain compliant with obligations and transparent with operations, with compensation otherwise
With one of the main draws behind STOs being the safety associated with the process, it is only logical that a third party insurance service would be developed. A service such as CrowdProtector should come as a welcome development for conservative investors looking to partake in the growing sector.
Despite only recently launching, the CrowdProtector service has seen early adoption through various platforms. A few examples of these include TruCrowd, CryptoLaunch, Silicon Prairie, Fundanna, and Nvsted.
In their press release, representatives from both Assurely, and AXA XL, took the time to comment on this development.
“New economic markets, such as crowdfunding or online capital formation, create great new opportunities for the Main Street investor, but also pose new risks…To combat new risks in new markets, investors look for a symbol of safety, validity, and trust. Online capital formation and crowdfunding – both equity and STOs – lack this symbol today. This marketplace needs trust, safety, and confidence among both issuers and investors to thrive; something that regulations and funding portals alone may not completely satisfy.”
Dan Kumpf, CUO of AXA XL, stated,
“We are excited to partner with Assurely and their technology-based underwriting of CrowdProtector™ policies…This solution demonstrates the value of insurance in helping opportunities move forward. New crowdfunding practices are proliferating today. Without proper coverage, millions are at risk. Our work with Assurely is a great example of innovation in the industry. Collaboration between incumbents and innovative InsurTech startups such as Assurely, will yield a positive result for the industry and advance it as a whole.”
AXA XL is a branch of the world renowned insurance provider AXA. They are a company which employs thousands of individuals globally. They maintain 19 offices in 17 different countries.
This New York based company was founded in 2016. They have strived since, to develop a platform allowing for the integration of traditional insurance services within the world of blockchain. The culmination of these efforts, since launch, have led to the aforementioned CrowdProtector Platform.
- Equity Tokens vs Security Tokens March 20, 2019
- Archax Gears up for Launch with Quod Financial March 20, 2019
- seriesOne to Utilize ST-20 Standard by Polymath March 20, 2019
- Assurely presents the CrowdProtector March 19, 2019
- Verseon to use BlockRules Platform for Upcoming Security Token Offering March 18, 2019