Block.one (now rebranded as B1) is making big moves in the crypto space with an upcoming IPO and newly announced exchange, Bullish. The exchange is projected to launch in 2021, despite the distinctly bearish mood in the market. B1 also recently announced a plan to go public on the New York Stock Exchange in a $9 billion deal.
Brock Pierce recently shared the following statement on LinkedIn:
"In the coming weeks, Bullish exchange will run a private pilot program leading up to its public launch anticipated later in 2021. In the pilot program, participants will be able to test and experience the platform first-hand within a simulated market environment, testing out Bullish exchange’s proprietary innovations,” Pierce said.
Block.one has been investing in more than the new exchange and a newly minted brand change -- they have been actively courting and developing promising new blockchain projects to create a more vital ecosystem around their blockchain network.
One such project is Chintai, a platform for “next-generation capital markets” which allows on-platform tokenization and manages compliance. Kevin Rose, Senior Vice President at Block.one, said in regards to the investment:
"Asset tokenization is an important trend that brings efficiency, liquidity, and fractional ownership to markets of all types,” Rose said. “We’re excited to work with Chintai toward our shared vision of a blockchain-enabled digital asset revolution built on regulated financial services."
We spoke with Ryan Bethem, COO and Co-Founder of Chintai, for insights into the work they are doing with their newly-funded platform.
What is the opportunity with blockchain and capital markets -- for institutions and for retail investors?
Blockchain technology is “the great equalizer”. In broad terms, capital markets are plagued with inefficiencies that result in restricted financial opportunities for smaller asset managers, SMEs, and average people. A compliance-enabled blockchain solution removes these inefficiencies and opens the door for an inclusive financial system.
It’s about democratizing access to investment opportunities for average people. It’s about funding the fountain of creativity that comes from ambitious entrepreneurs. It's about creating a financial system that has no operational bias towards social status, monetary wealth or position of power.
Is a DeFi Fund an easier entry for new retail investors that want to explore alt coins?
Most alts don’t have a viable product, team, or business plan. Many run entirely on hype, memes, and momentum… most are not worth investing in. This didn’t stop a lot of people who ignored my advice and then invested in Dogecoin.
We are building a regulated platform that should mitigate a lot of the “rug pulls” and Ponzi scheme tactics that exist in the industry today. Our platform will enable transparent raises for well-established businesses and viable new projects with credible business plans.
You have announced a number of traditional finance partners. In simple terms what are they looking to do?
Our compliance solution for the full trade life cycle of an asset is what sets us apart from the playing field. This includes issuance, secondary trading, settlement, and custody. We codify regulatory standards with smart contracts, which removes 50-70% of the manual overhead for compliance liability in capital markets.
Larger institutions are focused on future-proofing their competitive advantage and increasing margins. Smaller institutions are looking to disrupt the global financial system by offering innovative financial products and services that are almost exclusively operated by larger institutions today.
Is this just a way of making new crypto hedge funds? Will their existence be a matter of course in the next few years?
As digital assets and regulatory environments mature, the real potential here is the democratization of access to this space, to a point that conceivably over time, every single person could have the potential to become an issuer, market operator, and custodian of their own digital assets in a variety of ways. We reach that point through the initial steps of enabling financial institutions and businesses to embrace digital assets in a fully compliant manner.
Does the involvement of big traditional finance players mean more opportunity for small blockchain companies, or will the weaker projects be absorbed or forced out?
More opportunity for small companies in spades. We’re putting gunpowder in a cannon of untapped creative potential.
Traditional finance will legitimize blockchain technology and refine the standards. Smaller companies will be able to use the same technology and standards to conduct raises that would normally require being reliant on larger institutions. This will lead to a renaissance of innovation as a direct result of easier access to investment capital and funding.
Chintai raised $7.5M in seed financing from industry-leading funds, including Block.one, Cryptology Asset Group, Collective Capital, PEER Venture Partners, and Chimera Wealth. Chintai will use the funds to enable compliant tokenization of traditional financial assets on its blockchain network.
Chintai is launching an open beta at the end of July 2021. For blockchain devs and investors who are interested, register for updates on their website or Telegram group.
Cover image by Gerd Altmann from Pixabay