Swiss financial authority FINMA grants first licence to crypto firm

Crypto Fund becomes the first company in the sector to receive a FINMA authorisation to provide regulated digital asset services worldwide

The Swiss financial authority FINMA has granted its first authorisation to a crypto company, according to a press release sent to Coin Rivet by Marc P. Bernegger of Crypto Fund.

“This puts Crypto Fund (a subsidiary of Crypto Finance) on the same regulatory playing field as other globally recognised and regulated Swiss fund managers,” reads the press release.  It has received the licence under the Swiss Collective Investment Schemes Act CISA.

“The FINMA authorisation is a key step for our clients and investors, and for us in becoming a leading provider of digital asset services worldwide,” says Crypto Finance CEO and Co-Founder Jan Brzezek.

The playing field has shifted

He adds that the authorisation also firmly positions Crypto Fund on the same level as globally recognised Swiss fund managers.

“With this authorisation, the crypto asset playing field has shifted,” Brzezek comments. “The importance of crypto assets is growing, and our aim is to accelerate maturity in these markets. Regulatory recognition remains highly sought after by participants, as seen in recent press and company statements.”

The licence authorises the firm to manage and distribute domestic and foreign investment funds to qualified investors and provide investment advice for institutional clients.

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The Crypto Valley-based firm focuses on promoting adoption of blockchain technology through the provision of services such as brokerage and asset management. It connects investors with businesses that seek to leverage blockchain technology.

Raising the bar

“Without such an authorisation, the activities of crypto companies are limited in Switzerland and are only subject to fulfilling compliance with money laundering regulations,” says Maurer. “However, this does not address prudential supervision over all activities or the organisation of the crypto company.”

The startup firmly believes that the FINMA authorisation is a crucial acknowledgement of Crypto Fund and for crypto assets around the world, “coming from a country inextricably linked to banking and financial service expertise”.

New additions

The company has announced the addition of Professor Fabian Schär to its board of directors. Schär is currently the Director of the Center for Innovative Finance CIF at the University of Basel in the Faculty of Business and Economics.

His research areas include applications based on blockchain technology such as smart contracts, the transfer of financial assets in blockchain-based units (tokens) and further aspects of distributed ledger technology. He is the author of the book ‘Bitcoin, Blockchain und Kryptoassets’.

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