On Feb 1 , iSTOX a next-generation capital markets platform, graduated from the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS)’s Fintech Regulatory Sandbox.
ICHX Tech Pte Ltd (ICHX), the Singapore-based operator of the iSTOX platform, has been approved by MAS as a recognised market operator (RMO) and a capital markets services (CMS) licensee. This makes iSTOX the first capital markets platform using distributed ledger technology (DLT) to feature integrated issuance, custody and trading of digitised securities to be approved and licensed by a major regulator.
“This is a big milestone both for iSTOX and for the financial industry as a whole,” said Danny Toe, Founder and CEO of ICHX. “We started this just over two years ago as a vision of how investing could be done better. Today we truly emerge as a 21st century financial institution.”
iSTOX Chief Operating Officer Darius Liu stated “While capital markets have seen many changes and innovations over the years, the underlying core infrastructure hasn’t really changed since the advent of electronic trading decades ago. We are proud to deliver an operational platform that can address market demand while meeting the robust regulatory standards and licensing conditions set by MAS.”
MAS Chief FinTech Officer Sopnendu Mohanty added “We are delighted that the regulatory sandbox has enabled iSTOX to validate its technological innovation with actual customers in a safe manner,” he said. “This has again demonstrated that proportional regulations through sandbox experimentation can foster innovation and bring new benefits to consumers and the financial industry. We look forward to further our collaboration with innovators as we build a smart financial centre.”
Chew Sutat, Senior Managing Director and Head of Global Sales & Origination at Singapore Exchange (SGX), said, “Capital markets across the world are evolving at a rapid pace and those that embrace innovation and set new benchmarks will prove successful. Singapore has long been a world-class fintech hub, known for its innovative business environment. This recognition of iSTOX will further elevate Singapore’s capital markets position globally.”
In graduating from the MAS sandbox iSTOX is able to remove restrictions including limitations on the size of issuances that it can host and number of investors that can be onboarded. iSTOX brings private capital markets into the 21st century by allowing buyers and sellers to connect directly- removing longstanding barriers that have prevented a far greater pool of investors from access to private market opportunity.
Choo Oi Yee
Chief Commercial Officer Choo Oi Yee commented, “in addition to opening registration for accredited and institutional investors, we’re working hard on a pipeline of exciting issuances across different asset classes.”
Key investors of ICHX include Singapore Exchange (SGX), Heliconia, a subsidiary of Temasek Holdings, Japan’s Tokai Tokyo Financial Holdings (via subsidiary Tokai Tokyo Global Investments); Thailand’s Kiatnakin Phatra Financial Group; and South Korea’s Hanwha Asset Management.
ICHX has also forged partnerships with law firms Allen & Overy, Allen & Gledhill, Rajah & Tann and Dentons Rodyk; with corporate finance advisors SAC Capital and RHT Capital; and with professional services firm PwC Singapore and audit firm Deloitte, further strengthening its digitised security ecosystem.