Digital currency platform Uphold has announced the acquisition of a licensed broker-dealer through which plans to offers securities services and begin listing initial coin offering (ICO) tokens.
According to finance news portal Forbes, the crypto financial services company made the announcement on Wednesday, June 27, stating that it is currently waiting for regulatory approval from the US Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA). Along with JNK’S business assets, Uphold – formerly known as Bitreserve – will acquire its broker-dealer registration, which will allow it to provide securities transactions for its customers.
In addition, the crypto platform filed a Form ATS before the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) to extend the licenses of JNK. If everything goes accordingly, and obtains the approval from both governmental bodies, Uphold will have the way paved legally to offer assets that the SEC might categorize as securities, as well as to list ICO tokens, and open up these services to “a new group of institutional investors.”
Uphold CEO Adrian Steckel stated:
“We have kept a close eye on statements from global regulators regarding virtual currencies and tokens and believe that many crypto assets (particularly ICO tokens) may be treated as securities in some cases. Through our new securities division, we would be able to offer sales and trading of ICO tokens and fractional equities and provide other exchange services, under the oversight of the SEC and FINRA.”
While Uphold already offers the possibility to store, send and convert over 30 types of fiat currency, eight cryptocurrencies and four commodities, the current uncertainty on the status of digital assets in the eyes of the SEC, has kept many exchanges from adding new offerings.
However, there have been other attempts from various crypto-related platforms and companies to get the green light to facilitate transactions of securities. Back on September, 2017, Overstock.com became the first legally approved alternative to crypto-exchanges to trade tokens that have been deemed as securities.
Another crypto trading platform that rolled the bureaucratic rollercoaster to obtain its ATS license was Coinbase. On June, the company acquired Keystone Capital, seeking to offer not only securities trading, but also margin and over-the-counter (OTC) trading, as well as “new market data products.”
The introduction of institutional investors into the crypto market has been pointed out by analysts and experts as a key element in the rebound of the overall digital market capitalization, which has been on the downtrend since its All-Time High on December, 2017.