SIX, the financial services provider that operates the infrastructure of the Swiss Stock Exchange, is building a fully integrated trading, settlement and custody infrastructure for digital assets. The first set of services will be rolled out in the first half of 2019, the firm announced on Friday.
It will be the first market infrastructure in the world to offer a fully integrated end-to-end trading, settlement and custody service for digital assets. The service will provide a safe environment for issuing and trading digital assets, and enable the tokenization of existing securities and non-bankable assets to make previously untradeable assets tradeable.
The planned “digital asset ecosystem,” will be called SIX Digital Exchange and will be based on distributed ledger technology (DLT). The move will make the firm the first established, regulated financial player to set-up such an exchange.
Jos Dijsselhof, CEO of SIX commented on the new platform:
This is the beginning of a new era for capital markets infrastructures. For us, it is abundantly clear that much of what is going on in the digital space is here to stay and will define the future of our industry.
Dijsselhof stated that SIX is currently in a unique position in that it runs the entire securities and payments value chain in Switzerland, making the firm ideally positioned to create the digital ecosystem for the future. This will allow existing and new market entrants to develop their business models for the opportunities available in this new environment.
Platform not for Trading Crypto
The exchange however clarified that the new platform is not aiming at crypto trading, but as a marketplace where conventional investors can digitize their assets through distributed ledger technology.
Dijsselhof explained that the financial industry now needs to bridge the gap between traditional financial services and digital communities, a role that SIX wants to play.
Earlier this year, SIX joined hands with a group of other stock exchange operators and financial-information transmission service Swift to explore the use of blockchain technology in post-trade scenarios, such as corporate action processing, including voting and proxy-voting.
SIX is also part of another blockchain project with UBS, Credit Suisse, and Barclays, among other partners, that aims to improve the quality of counterparty reference data with industry counterparts using Ethereum smart contracts.
CoinDesk reports that the Swiss exchange is not the only exchange that is interested in incorporating theblockchain technology in its operations. Earlier this year, Bitrazzi reported that Australia and Hong Kong stock exchanges were exploring blockchain opportunities, as well as how to integrate the technology in its operations.
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