The security token industry will be born in 2018 and will provide a key foundation for the evolving financial internet. Security tokens will enable a generation of post-ICO, crypto-based fundraising, and will be used to tokenize the trillions of dollars of global assets (real estate, debt, equity). The Security Token Academy will provide insights about this new era for security token enthusiasts, investor and issuers.
There are two areas that security tokens will address. First is the evolution of 2017 ICOs to 2018 STOs (Security Token Offerings). The second is the tokenization of the multi-trillion dollar global asset universe in a drive to improve liquidity.
The rise of cryptocurrencies and smart contract-enabled Blockchain technology brought forth the Initial Coin Offering (ICO) boom which raised about $5.6 billion in 2017.
In 2017, two key drivers began to push crypto-based raises into a next generation phase that is based on security tokens.
First, the U.S. regulatory pressure -- mostly from the SEC starting in 2017 and accelerating in 2018 -- is pushing many crypto-based offerings to be regulated. Some U.S. crypto-based offerings have indeed been using regulated mechanisms ("Reg D") and, in some cases, there has been an informal use of the phrase "Security Token" to suggest they are "compliant.”
Second, there has been an interest to improve the efficiency and the liquidity of offerings. An advanced form of security token is based on a technical foundation that can enable "Know Your Customer" (KYC) and Anti-Money Laundering (AML) measures on a somewhat automated basis, versus the complex and costly human processing of KYC and AML. These measures are important in cross-border raises which is key as issuers try and access investors on a global basis. Tokenization of new issuances or raises is intended to improve access to global investors, but also lower costs and speed up processing time. Tokenization is also important when new offerings can be traded on future "token exchanges" (Reg D offerings often have a lockup time for accredited investors of up to 12 months).
The Security Token industry goes beyond the facilitation of new crypto-based raises. Although 2017 did see $5.6 billion raised, the size of global assets (real estate, debt, equity) is more than $700 trillion. Tokenization of these assets could improve liquidly by opening up trading on a global basis.
The security token ecosystem will include tokenization companies, token-based exchanges, advisors and investment management companies -- and more.
The Academy will follow the new industry’s evolution for security token enthusiasts, issuers, and investors. To do this, we will capture and showcase the voices, wisdom, and insights of security token experts – ranging from business, investment and legal experts. Security Token Academy will feature a Security Token Expert Series that includes live expert panels and roundtables, webinars and boot camps, local meetings and more. Online video is a key mechanism for the Academy. Our multi-million dollar Los Angeles studio uses broadcast quality fiber connections to cities around the U.S. and around the world to enable live, interactive discussions with security token experts. We also will be providing regular updates on our website and social media channels. In addition to discussions among our expert guests, we also want discussions with our audience. Viewers will be able to ask questions of our expert guests, provide comments, participate in surveys and quizzes, help spread the word, write articles, contribute ideas!
The Security Token Expert Series will cover a variety of interesting topics include:
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