The panel of the present and future of security tokens panel at Barcelona Trading Conference hosted by Finance Magnates included Philipp Pieper of Swarm, Bilal El Alamy of EquiSafe, Carlos Domingo of Securitize, Yoni Assia of eToro and Roel Walfert of CryptoDelta; moderated by Ziv Keinan of Digital Asset Lawyers. Enjoy the takeaways from each panelist:
Bilal El Alamy – CEO & Founder, EquiSafe
Bilal Alamy of EquiSafe most recently tokenized Anna mansion in France. He shared that finding a good asset is half the job while the balance is finding investors. He states France has a proactive regulatory framework which has clear definitions on what is and is not a security.
Bilal sees real estate as first movers to be tokenized but institutional investors are not ready yet due to lack of global stablecoin structure and regulatory certainty. He believes we need to successfully keep executing quality tokenization raises and developing the technology.
“Investing into security tokens needs to be easy as buying a book on Amazon” – Bilal El Alamy
Carlos Domingo – CEO & Co-Founder, Securitize
Carlos Domingo of Securitize informs us that Securitize-issued tokens are currently available for trading in OpenFinance & SharesPost and is expecting to list tokens on the tZERO exchange in the future.
He states that the vision we see of this digital securities space will take longer than people expect. Securitize currently has 40 ongoing projects; With over 40,000 private placement offerings in the U.S alone last year, there is a lot of confidence still needed for people to make the transition into digital securities.
“In reality today, users can log into OpenFinance and buy SpiceVC tokens.” – Carlos Domingo
The challenges faced by secondary trading infrastructure is that regulatory clearance is geographically stifling the number of participants and tokens on these exchanges.
The industry is still at its infancy and will take another 12 – 18 months to mature and liquidity for security tokens won’t be as big as the crypto markets.
Securitize recently completed their most successful quarter by signing on 17 new clients.
When Ziv asked about the tokenized venture capital fund, SpiceVC, Carlos informed us that when typically investing in a venture capital fund, funds are locked away for 7-10 years. This is risky and illiquid. By tokenizing a venture capital fund it is easier to get people to invest as people can exit by selling their digital securities.
Philipp Pieper – CEO & Council Member, Swarm
Philipp Pieper joined Swarm in 2017 and the team has successfully built the open-source market access protocol (MAP) which empowers issuers, service providers, and regulators to plug-in directly to the technology.
Philipp states “the fact that it’s on the blockchain will disappear”; believing an issuing approach similar to the traditional process is required to achieve success in convincing legacy system users to digitize assets and securities.
He feels with the enhancement of technology prior intermediaries such as a clearinghouse is no longer required as transactions are settled and transparent on the blockchain. There has been a lot of progress in the last six months from the regulatory side; If we can provide a cost-efficient and regulatory cleared solution we can successfully convince the industry to tokenize.
“Now it’s the time to untangle traditional financial markets” – Philipp Pieper
Learn more about Swarm in our previous write-up: Understanding Swarm: Tokenization, Market Access Protocol & $SWM Explained
Yoni Assia – CEO & Founder, eToro
Yoni Assia is the CEO & Founder of eToro and has stated that we are in a point of time where there are no standards for issuing security tokens yet.
Currently, there are higher legal fees to hire digital security specialists and today we face a big liquidity gap between buyers and sellers of digital securities.
Roel Walfert – Founder, CryptoDelta
Roel Walfert is the founder of CryptoDelta, they launched their first STO in December of 2017. Their team from the Netherland, the first country to launch a stock market. Roel has built an entire end-to-end ecosystem with various acting companies for tokenization.
In conclusion, the security token / digital securities space still has a far way to go. Challenges being faced today are educating regulators, developing secure infrastructures, on-boarding projects via issuers and raising awareness to investors.
A big thank you from STO Search & Filter to the Finance Magnates team for hosting The Barcelona Trading Conference, 2019.
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