San Francisco, CA
As the organizer of the SF Security Token Meetup and NYC Security Token Meetup, I have tried to foster discussion outside of what is directly relevant to me in order to grow awareness for the various obstacles around tokenizing real world assets, custodying these assets, trading these assets compliantly, etc.
When I first created these Meetup groups I did not think that we would get so much interest. I was wrong. The first SF Meetup that we organized around security tokens had more than 200 people RSVP, as did our second SF Meetup. People were hungry to learn more about the space as evidenced by people packing in to the small “NODE” hangout at 1011 Kearny Street to hear Mike Belshe, Josh Stein, Jay Thakrar, Vijay Chetty, and me talk about Security Tokens. Some of the audience was standing in the stairwells just to listen in on the conversation.
What I have learned by putting together these meetups is that people are hungry to understand how U.S. regulations will impact the crypto and blockchain industry and whether all ICO’s will slowly move toward looking more like STO’s in the way that they are handled. In a nutshell — are STO’s the saving grace of crypto that will prevent the painful market crash of many of these altcoins which debuted through ICO’s in 2017 and 2018? This existential question seems to be close to the hearts of many attendees — some of them who have left well paying jobs at tech companies such as Google, Uber, Facebook in order to pursue their dreams of becoming a crypto entrepreneur.
What I can say for certain is that STO’s are not a perfect use case for every product or company. In fact, ICO’s aren’t either. However, the fact that many people see STO’s as a saving grace can help bring many of these novel ideas around Security Tokens mainstream in order to help make sure that high-quality STO’s are able to raise money in order to hit their funding targets, ship a high-quality product, and eventually have their STO’s make their way onto a high-quality security token trading platform.
Even if ICO’s are deemed securities, Sharespost and others that we bring together on these Meetup panels are paving the way for tokenized securities to be traded compliantly and with accompanying liquidity on trading platforms, so worries of illiquid tokenized assets will soon be a thing of the past.
These meetups have become opportunities for the community to exchange ideas on how to continue building the security token landscape. They also educate more members of the community about the obstacles facing security tokens. As the community continues to grow and share ideas, we can find ways to enhance the growth of the security token landscape. What are your thoughts on how we should continue to foster discussion among the community around security tokens? Please feel free to let me know in the comments below.
Disclaimer: These opinions are solely my own and do not represent the opinions of Sharespost or any companies that I may advise or invest in.
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