OpenFinance Launches Regulated Alternative Trading System for Securities Tokens

OpenFinance, a security token trading platform, has launched a regulated alternative trading system (ATS) for security tokens, according to information shared with Cointelegraph August 29.

In the U.S. and Canada, an ATS is a non-exchange trading venue that that matches buyers and sellers to find counterparties for transactions. They are usually regulated as broker-dealers instead of as exchanges.

In an email, Juan Hernandez, CEO at the U.S.-based OpenFinance, confirmed to Cointelegraph that the company has created the trading system, noting that the official press release will appear later on the company’s Medium account.

Earlier this month, cryptocurrency exchange Huobi entered into a strategic partnership with OpenFinance. The press release stated that the partnership was a move “toward a more regulated security token market and growing confidence in the U.S. market.” Regarding Huobi’s strategic investment, Hernandez said:

“We believe that security tokens are the future of finance, and that Huobi’s investment in our trading platform is reflective of the rising interest around the globe in this emerging financial ecosystem.”

In the U.S., a security token is any token which is found to be a security by employing the Howey Test, i.e. the token offers an opportunity to contribute money and to share in the profits of an enterprise managed and partly owned by respondents. Additionally, the scheme involves an investment of money in a common enterprise with profits to come solely from the efforts of others.

Last week, U.S.-based registered broker-dealer Rialto Trading announced that the company has been working with the regulators to expand its trading operations to include blockchain-based securities, according to a PR Newswire press release August 23.

On July 16, leading U.S. cryptocurrency exchange and wallet service Coinbase announced that it had received approval from the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) to list digital coins considered to be securities.

A week later, Coinbase retracted its statement, saying that it was “not correct to say that the SEC and FINRA approved Coinbase’s purchase of Keystone because SEC was not involved in the approval process.” The SEC confirmed that they did not give Coinbase “explicit approval” for the deal, while a spokesperson wrote that Coinbase’s communication with the SEC had been of an “informal” nature.