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Abu Dhabi, Financial Giants Bet on Blockchain to Help ETF Ecosystem

By Linas Kmieliauskas
Abu Dhabi, Financial Giants Bet on Blockchain to Help ETF Ecosystem 101
Source: iStock/adrian825

New York-headquartered international investment giant WisdomTree Investments together with Abu Dhabi Investment Office (ADIO) and other investors invested in Securrency, as they aim to integrate blockchain technology into the exchange-traded fund (ETF) ecosystem.

Securrency, a Washington-headquartered developer of institutional-grade blockchain-based financial and regulatory technology, raised USD 17.65 million in a Series A funding round, which was led by WisdomTree as a strategic investor. Besides ADIO, other participants in the round include Japanese financial services giant, Monex Group (the owner of the Coincheck exchange), and venture capital firms RRE Ventures, Strawberry Creek Ventures, and Panthera Capital Investments, according to WisdomTree.

"Through this investment and its collaboration with Securrency, WisdomTree plans to pursue the integration of blockchain technology into the ETF ecosystem to bring the benefits of ETFs to a broader range of investors and improve the investor experience," added the company with USD 63.8 billion in assets under management.

WisdomTree, through its subsidiaries in the U.S., Europe and Canada, is an ETF and exchange-traded product (ETP) sponsor and asset manager.

As reported, in December, the company launched its first cryptocurrency product - a physically-backed Bitcoin ETP (BTCW), which is listed on SIX, the Swiss Stock Exchange.

"In our review, we found instances of unnecessary applications of [blockchain] and poor compliance with existing regulations; however, there are numerous elements of blockchain technology that, when correctly applied, will bring benefits to investors," Jonathan Steinberg, WisdomTree Founder and CEO, was quoted as saying in the press release.

"We have identified areas for exciting innovation within the ETF ecosystem and in financial services more broadly," he added without specifying.

According to the announcement, Securrency’s blockchain-based market infrastructure technology provides a universal identity and compliance framework and interoperability to facilitate global liquidity. Also, Securrency’s proprietary, patent-pending Compliance Aware Token™ technology provides "multi-jurisdictional compliance and unprecedented convenience to financial services providers and market participants to facilitate the issuance, trading, and servicing of digital securities and other digital assets." The company, that was founded in 2015, claims that this technology is blockchain-agnostic and its compliance and policy-enforcement tools support ledger-to-ledger transactions across multiple blockchains.

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