Switzerland’s stock exchange SIX has won regulatory approval to launch its long-awaited digital bourse SDX. The green light from the country’s markets watchdog also grants SIX approval to operate a central securities depository for digital assets, the Zurich-based exchange said.
This authorization enables SDX to go live with a fully regulated, integrated trading, settlement, and custody infrastructure based on distributed ledger technology- also known as blockchain-for digital securities.
Thomas Zeeb, Global Head, Exchanges & Member Executive Board, SIX said: “The digitalization of financial markets continues apace, and while the final shape of the market is still evolving, this is an important milestone in providing institutional investors with a safe and robust infrastructure meeting all of the core requirements of a traditional exchange and CSD infrastructure. In this regard, the SDX approval process has proven to be an invaluable experience for SIX and for the industry as a whole."
(Thomas Zeeb, Global Head, Exchanges & Member Executive Board, SIX)
It has been instrumental in helping to define our offering, our strategy, and to build a new ecosystem to help our clients meet the increasing demands for commercial return that they face from their stakeholders. This is an important milestone in bringing the digitalization of capital markets into the mainstream, but it is only the beginning. We will continue to work with our clients, regulators, and other stakeholders to shape the markets of the future.”
The landmark move from SIX, a milestone in the world of cryptocurrencies, would make it one of the first major bourses to launch an exchange dedicated to digital assets, beating the likes of the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) and Nasdaq in the crypto race. The Swiss group unveiled plans to debut a digital bourse in 2018.
Over the coming months and years, SIX Digital Exchange will continue to invest in building out the digital financial ecosystem to create a global liquidity network for digital assets by engaging in cooperative ventures with partners and accelerating the onboarding of various global and local financial players. As this international customer base expands to include banks, issuers, insurance firms, institutional investors, the members of SDX will create a global exchange network for digital assets, unlocking global liquidity based on Distributed Ledger Technology.
Switzerland, known for Swiss banking standards, is a crypto-friendly country that has implemented some of the most progressive cryptocurrency legislation. The Swiss canton of Zug dubbed “Crypto Valley”, already accepts tax payments in cryptocurrency.
The launch of SDX shows the growing popularity of digital assets as institutions, big companies and even entire nations like El Salvador are incorporating crypto in their system.