First Ever Blockchain-Based IPO Launches on National Stock Exchange
MERJ Exchange, the national stock exchange of Seychelles had previously announced a partnership with a UK-based fintech firm, Globacap to issue tokenized securities available on the MERJ exchange platform. MERJ Exchange became the first national stock exchange to list tokenized securities. The exchange is now launching an IPO of the tokens.
Globacap, founded in 2017 and based in the UK, is a blockchain fundraising firm that will also be supporting the launch. The fundraising firm was accepted into the Financial Conduct Authority’s (FCA) regulatory Sandbox Cohort 4 in 2018 and became the first company to issue a security token backed by equity under the FCA’s surveillance. Having exited the sandbox in June 2019, Globacap became the UK's first fully regulated digital security offering platform.
The shares are available on the MERJ exchange platform as well as through broker-dealer Jumpstart and crypto custodian Prime Trust, which are both based in the US and via Globacap.
Edmond Tuohy, CEO of MERJ Exchange mentioned:
“These novel financial instruments are here to reshape the financial industry for years to come. MERJ provides the regulatory framework necessary for investors globally to access these markets in a safe and compliant manner. Whether they’re issuing tokenized or traditional shares, companies are not going to want to go to a jurisdiction that doesn’t meet high international standards because it will attract greater scrutiny from global regulators.”
Reported by CoinDesk, MERJ mentioned that it is using the Ethereum blockchain to record share register ownership as “it is the best supported protocol for these purposes.”
MERJ’s listings page shows that the tokenized security is currently trading at $2.42, with a market capitalization of $21,015,781.
Licensed by the Indian Ocean nation’s Financial Services Authority as a securities exchange, clearing agency, and securities depository (CSD), MERJ is able to host issuers from North America, Europe, Asia, Australia, and Africa.
Tuohy further mentioned that MERJ being licensed as an exchange, and CSD will help deliver on the benefits of tokenization:
“We’ve spent three years working with our regulators to build a robust and compliant framework for issuers wanting to leverage the benefits of distributed ledger technology within a publicly listed environment.”