The U.S. Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) has licensed blockchain firm Texture Capital as a digital securities broker-dealer and an Alternative Trading System operator.
According to a Nov. 10 announcement, Texture Capital will now be able to begin issuing, tokenizing, and trading digital securities in the United States. The firm’s founder and CEO Richard Johnson said:
“Blockchain technology has tremendous potential to improve market structure by enhancing transparency, streamlining workflows, and automating processes […] and it is important to ensure that we innovate within the established regulatory frameworks.”
Texture Capital aims to leverage technology—and more specifically blockchain—to allow institutions to directly participate in the private markets more efficiently. The company uses on-chain smart contracts to simplify the market structure for private placements.
Claiming that “private markets are ripe for disruption” Johnson said “[w]e have already developed foundational functionality including token issuance and secondary trading. In the future, we will harness the creativity coming out of DeFi (Decentralized Finance), to deliver on our bold vision to rebuild global markets and improve capital flows throughout the economy.”
Regulated financial institutions increasingly join the industry
Over the last few years, the crypto asset space has seen an astonishingly quick evolution from being an unregulated market well suited to the needs of anarchists and criminals to an industry that sees and increasingly seeks the participation of regulated financial institutions.
As Modern Consensus reported at the end of October, the Swiss subsidiary of Gazprombank—the banking arm of Russian state-owned energy firm Gazprom—has received regulatory approval to offer crypto services in Switzerland. A representative said that the bank’s customers “get access to cryptocurrency liquidity, while the safekeeping of the cryptocurrencies is taken care of by a Swiss regulated bank,” something unthinkable even just two years ago.
In mid-September major cryptocurrency exchange Kraken obtained a bank charter approval from the state of Wyoming, becoming a special-purpose depository institution. And today, crypto custodian Anchorage announced that it had passed the audit giving it a prestigious and difficult SOC 1 Type 1 certification of its financial reporting practices—something generally reserved for traditional financial institutions.