This week the UK Financial Conduct Authority published its Guidance on Cryptoassets Feedback and Final Guidance to CP 19/3, which "aims to give market participants and interested stakeholders clarity on the types of cryptoassets that fall within the FCA's regulatory remit and the resulting obligations." This "Final Guidance" defines three key categories of cryptoassets: "exchange tokens" for buying and selling goods and services; "utility tokens" for accessing a product or service; and "security tokens," which provide rights and obligations akin to specified investments. Elsewhere in Europe, beginning Jan. 1, 2020, German cryptocurrency-related businesses such as exchanges and wallet providers will be required to be licensed by the German Federal Financial Supervisory Authority (BaFin) and comply with AML regulations.
In Switzerland this week, Aximetria, which offers a personal finance app for cryptocurrencies, was reportedly awarded a license from the Swiss Financial Services Standards Association (VQF), which allows the firm to start operations as a crypto financial intermediary under the Swiss Anti-Money Laundering Act. In another report from Switzerland, Zug-based startup Smart Valor has announced a new exchange operating from both Switzerland and Liechtenstein that will provide custody, trading and brokerage services.
In Gibraltar this week, Quedex announced that it was granted a Distributed Ledger Technology (DLT) Providers license for trading of cryptocurrency derivatives and for custody of cryptocurrencies by the Gibraltar Financial Services Commission. According to reports, this makes Quedex "the first regulated entity of its kind globally." In Bermuda this week, XBTO International (XBTOI) became the third firm to receive a Bermuda Monetary Authority License under Bermuda's 2018 Digital Asset Business Act.
Finally, in the U.S., a press release this week announced that startup ALTA has been accepted into the Arizona Attorney General's Office FinTech program. According to the press release, ALTA is seeking to launch a service that would allow cash-intensive businesses "to pay each other for goods and services using a proprietary blockchain-based, U.S. dollar-backed stablecoin digital asset instead of cash."
For more information, please refer to the following links:
- UK FCA: Guidance on Cryptoassets Feedback and Final Guidance to CP 19/3
- Germany: Crypto Businesses Will Require a BaFin License Next Year
- Crypto-Focused Finance App Aximetria Wins License From Swiss Regulator
- Crypto Exchange and Custodian Smart Valor Goes Live in Switzerland
- Quedex Receives DLT License from Gibraltar Financial Services Commission; Quedex becomes first regulated crypto-centric futures and options exchange
- Crypto Trader XBTOI Wins Bermuda License
- Arizona Attorney General's Office Accepts ALTA into FinTech Sandbox
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