Security tokens continue to reshape the way we conduct business on a global scale. These unique tokens provide companies and investors with a regulated way to enter the crypto space. When a company launches a security token it’s called an STO, or security token offering. Understanding the pros and cons of security tokens makes you a better-informed investor.
Regulatory integration is a huge step forward for the cryptospace. It allows traditional business models to convert over to more efficient blockchain-based structures. While this approach is perfect for many types of business models, it doesn’t always make sense due to some of the drawbacks security tokens contain. Let’s take a moment to examine the pros and cons of security tokens to get a better understanding of these amazing tokens true capabilities and limitations.
Pros of Security Tokens
Security tokens allow traditional business transactions to be tokenized while still meeting the regulatory requirements set in place for the industry in question. Tokenization is the process of transferring an item to the blockchain. For example, a security token can represent ownership rights in a property.
Transferring property ownership rights requires that all parties involved in the transaction meet certain related regulatory requirements. Security tokens have the ability to integrate these regulations directly into their core protocol. In September of this year, the security token launch platform Polymath partnered with BlockEstate to begin the tokenization of the real estate market.
Reducing Investment Thresholds
Security tokens are a powerful fundraising tool which allows companies to lower their minimum investment requirements to nearly non-existent. In the past, companies were forced to require that participating investors provide a certain level of funding to participate in their campaigns.
This situation led to the dismissal of interested parties that were unable to meet the minimum requirements. In other words, companies were unable to accept capital from millions of investors because the cost of processing the investor’s information and was too expensive.
Blockchain technology eliminates this problem by automating the majority of the process. Security tokens take the concept further and remove the regulatory workload through the use of smart contracts.
Enhancing Asset Liquidity
Security tokens provide investors with more liquidity. In its current state, there are thousands of investors locked into long-term investments in which they must wait until the maturity date to access their funds. Since many of these are long-term investments, it can leave these individuals without access to their money for years.
Security tokens can eliminate these concerns. Once a fund is tokenized, an investor can buy and sell fund shares as they see fit. This produces a more effective flow of assets and enables the development of secondary trading platforms to handle new market opportunities.
Hosting an STO is far cheaper than hosting an IPO. Companies can see upwards of 7% of their raised capital go towards issuance and transaction cost in a traditional IPO. The reasons for these high costs are simple. IPOs require the involvement of numerous third-party verification systems. Each adds a fee to the total cost of the transaction.
STOs reduce the cost of crowdfunding significantly when compared to IPOs. Blockchain technology allows companies to automate the most costly parts of their transactions. Additionally, smart contracts can automatically monitor, track, and distribute investment funds without the need of any third party intervention.
Security tokens allow companies to host international fundraising campaigns. Sending any form of fiat currency internationally can be a huge headache. Depending on the amount of funds being invested, you could see over a week in delays. Additionally, there is a risk of losing funds during the monetary conversion.
Security token investors eliminate these international costs. These tokens can be sent across the globe for no additional fees. Also, you won’t have to wait days for your blockchain transaction to complete. In most instances, the transaction takes minutes. Best of all, there is no need to convert your funds.
Improved Market Efficiency
The transparent nature of blockchain technology improves the current market systems significantly. Security tokens provide instant monitoring capabilities. Users can easily track their tokens and investments via a blockchain monitoring application. Investors gain untethered access to their investment’s fundraising progress.
Cons of Security Tokens
No token is without its imperfections, and security tokens are no exception to this rule. These helpful token are bridging the gap between conventional investments and the blockchain space. That being said, they are not without their limitations.
Investor Accreditation Limitations
One of the biggest drawbacks to security tokens is the inability of non-accredited investors to own them. In the US, this means that more STOs will require you to be an accredited investor as part of their SEC compliance. Unfortunately, you need to earn at least $200,000 per year, or, have at least 1 million dollars in the bank, if you want to be an accredited investor.
More Expensive than Utility Tokens
Unlike ICOs, STOs need to include a host of other organizations in their crowdfunding campaign. Underwriting companies are a perfect example of an added cost that STO participants must foot the bill for. Regulation isn’t cheap and it’s much more expensive to host an STO when compared to an ICO.
Secondary Market Trading Restrictions
Another drawback encountered by security token investors is secondary trading market restrictions. Security tokens can only be transferred via licensed platforms. The platforms must possess a security trading’s license in the country they operate in. Additionally, security tokens feature a time-lock mechanism. You can only trade these tokens between qualified investors for a predetermined amount of time after the STO.
The Pros and Cons of Security Tokens
Now that you have a better understanding of the pros and cons of security tokens, you can make an informed decision on which is the right investment for you. Remember, there isn’t a one-size-fits-all when discussing tokens and what may be the perfect fit for one business, could be a total disaster for the next.
Security tokens are the chain that links conventional markets to the cryptospace. You should expect to see explosive growth in this sector over the coming months as the advantages of blockchain technology continue to become better understood globally.
Security Token Issuers to Benefit from alliance of ‘Issuance’ and ‘VStock Transfer’
Issuance partners with VStock Transfer
Just announced today, deal marketing platform, Issuance, has partnered with stock transfer agent, VStock Transfer. This alliance was formed as Issuance saw a need on behalf of security token issuers. This was the ease of token registration and transfer.
As a result, partnering with a transfer agent such as VStock Transfer, allows companies having completed a digital security offering the ability to utilize services and experience based upon decades of experience in securities law.
These teams should be able to hit the ground running, as Issuance CEO, Darren Marble, has had previous experience working with VStock Transfer. Through their ability to provide experience, along with cost saving measures, it’s no wonder why Issuance has partnered with VStock Transfer.
The CEOs of each company discussed the partnership at hand.
Yoel Goldfeder, CEO of VStock Transfer, stated, “As an SEC-compliant transfer agent who has had the pleasure of working with a range of companies from private to pre-IPO issuers to NYSE American, NASDAQ and OTC listed companies, it was a seamless pivot into digital securities…We look forward to working with Issuance, an industry pioneer who will help to fuel the capital raising component for our clients.”
Darren Marble, CEO of Issuance, stated, “As digital securities continue to merge with the capital market infrastructure, support from companies such as VStock Transfer are critical to remain compliant throughout the lifespan of a DSO…We are thrilled to add VStock Transfer to our growing network of strategic partners and provide valuable registry and transfer services for our clients and their shareholders.”
VStock Transfer is based out of Woodmere, New York, where they provide services as an SEC registered ‘stock transfer agent’. The company is spearheaded by CEO, Yoel Goldfeder – a seasoned attorney specializing in corporate and securities law.
For a deeper look at what services VStock Transfer is able to provide, make sure to visit their website HERE.
Issuance was founded in 2018, and is based out of Los Angeles, California. Above all, the main purpose of the company is to act as a bridging platform. For example, this means working to connect investors with appropriate digital securities issuers.
Make sure to check securities.io again for future news on Issuance, as they have indicated future plans to tokenize themselves.
Issuance is rapidly developing into a well-rounded company. For instance, this marks just one of various strategic partnerships announced in recent weeks.
Here is a look at a few of our other articles detailing those endeavours.
Digital Securities Platform DX.Exchange, Survives First Week Scare
Dx.Exchange has had quite the tumultuous week. As the exchange closes its first week of operation, the team behind the project was able to dodge a potentially damaging situation.
From hordes of investors signing up pre-launch, to potentially disastrous glitches, here is a brief look at the problems that plagued week 1.
Details of the Problem
Upon launch of the platform, an anonymous user took it upon themselves to evaluate DX.Exchange. Shockingly, the user found information leaks that could potentially be harmful to a variety of parties.
Information being leaked ranged from password reset links, to names, email addresses, and more. With this, if someone were so inclined, they would be able to create backdoor entrances to user’s accounts.
It isn’t hard to imagine what kind of havoc a malicious individual could wreak.
In an attempt to allay investor’s fears, Dx.Exchange has reached out the public with the following statement.
“We would like to thank the vigilant reporter, and our supportive community, who together with, brought his issue to our attention. We are happy to report that the vulnerability has been successfully patched, and no user funds were compromised. Our launch was met with a stellar response from our community eager to trade cryptocurrencies and digital stocks. Customer funds were always safe, our multi layer advanced monitoring and defense mechanism was able to avoid any further issue.”
This statement came after the company scheduled platform maintenance within hours of the news breaking.
WE SCHEDULED FOR TODAY AT 11:00 AM (ESTONIA TIME ZONE) A MAINTENANCE UPDATE TO IMPROVE OUR PLATFORM FUNCTIONALITY AND PERFORM SEVERAL BUG FIXES AND UPDATES. THE PLATFORM WILL COME BACK FULLY FUNCTIONAL AFTER FEW MINUTES. THANK YOU FOR YOUR PATIENCE
— DX.Exchange (@DXdotExchange) January 9, 2019
Caught out Attention
DX.Exchange originally caught our attention due to the manner in which they offer their services. Rather than hosting digital securities of companies that have decided to tokenize, DX.Exchange has taken a different approach.
They are purchasing traditional shares of publically traded companies, and then issuing their own security tokens to investors, representing ownership of the shares. Due to the method in which this transaction takes place, the shares are held by DX.Exchange. However, investors holding the associated security token receive the full range of benefits associated with them (dividends, equity etc.).
Examples of these companies notably include Apple, Tesla, Amazon, and others.
The CEO of DX.Exchange has stated that due to their licencing and region of operation, the SEC has no means in which to stop them from offering these services.
However, there are many skeptics of the exchange that believe it will eventually face due recourse. Through what means is unclear, but there are certainly going to be companies that do not want their shares tokenized in such a fashion.
DX.Exchange is based out of Estonia, and was founded in 2018. Above all, the company acts as an online exchange, providing investors access to a variety of digital assets.
Prior to the events discussed here today, we recently spoke about DX.Exchange and the companies recent launch. To learn more about DX.Exchange, make sure to read the article below.
tZERO Completes Distribution of Security Token
In a recent press release, tZERO has announced that it has finished distributing their native token. This token goes by ‘TZROP’, and is known as a digital security – representing ownership in tZERO itself.
While tZERO finished the token creation process months ago, per regulations, it was mandated that they remain in lock-up for a 90-day period. During this time, tokens were to be held by a third party custodial service. Finally, this 90-day lockup came to an end on January 10th, resulting in the aforementioned distribution and press release.
This issuance process comes months after tZERO completed a wildly successful security token offering, or ‘STO’. For example, taking place over a roughly 2 month span in mid-2018, tZERO was able to raise $134 million USD. In addition, this raise was made possible through investments seen from over 1000 parties worldwide.
Commentary on the Issuance
Multiple representatives from tZERO spoke on the importance of this token issuance.
tZERO Executive Chairman, Patrick Byrne, stated, “The issuance of the world’s first public cryptosecurity, OSTKP, in 2016 was tZERO’s Chuck Yeager moment: we broke the speed of sound by introducing the concept of real-time trade settlement. Today marks our Yuri Gagarin moment, where we leave behind the confines of the known world of traditional capital markets and take the first steps towards a new market powered by blockchain.”
tZERO CEO, Saum Noursalehi, stated, “This is one of the first Security Token Offerings on a decentralized public network, and was conducted in full compliance with the U.S. securities laws…This is an exciting milestone for tZERO, and we are even more enthusiastic about the opportunities this will create for private and public companies wishing to raise capital through security token offerings, and for investors who wish to trade those securities.”
The next step to be taken by tZERO, and the most anticipated by investors, will be the launch of a trading platform. The company originally launched a prototype of this platform on April 9th of 2018. However, it is anticipated that a full launch will occur midway through 2019.
The launch of this platform will facilitate trading via secondary markets. Thereby, imbuing new levels of liquidity to previously illiquid assets.
We have recently reported on progress being made by tZERO. For instance, here are a look at a few noteworthy events from recent days.
tZERO is based out of New York, and is a subsidiary of Overstock.com. Each are products of Patrick Byrne’s, who has recently noted that he will be increasing his focus on the development of tZERO. Above all, this subsidiary acts as a platform to facilitate various services aimed towards security tokens.
- Osman Sultan, Chief Executive Officer of EITC, will provide a keynote speech at UNLOCK and announce new blockchain initiatives over the course of the two-day forum
- UNLOCK Blockchain Forum announces more than 56 Global and regional Speakers including Blockchain Evangelist Nick Spanos
- Seoul Mayor Confirms to Attend CHAIN PLUS+ Blockchain Summit
- The Billionaire Investor Tim DRAPER is participating at the Blockchain Economy Istanbul Summit!
- European Blockchain Investment Congress 2019 Bringing Industry Professionals, Investors and Startups Together in Vienna
- Security Token Issuers to Benefit from alliance of ‘Issuance’ and ‘VStock Transfer’ January 15, 2019
- Interview Series – Dave Hendricks, CEO & cofounder of Vertalo January 14, 2019
- Digital Securities Platform DX.Exchange, Survives First Week Scare January 14, 2019
- tZERO Completes Distribution of Security Token January 13, 2019
- SharesPost trades Security Tokens on Secondary Markets Platform January 12, 2019