Blockchain tech startup Securitize registered as a transfer agent with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Administration (SEC). Securitize, a provider of technology for issuing blockchain tokens, believes registration will further boost adoption.
Securitize can now take the role of official keeper of records about changes of ownership in securities following its registration announcement. Blockchains are already tracking asset transfers, though the San Francisco-based startup says it’s more expedient.
“We can increase the amount of securities issued on the blockchain and give comfort to people that this is a regulated space,” said Carlos Domingo, co-founder and CEO of Securitize. “The SEC has also started approving other types of exempted securities like Reg A+ and down the road those people will need transfer agents.”
In addition, the startup is offering to record transfers for free, which would typically cost nearly $150 per transfer for regular, SEC-registered securities, Domingo said. Securitize will still charge for its management of securities and corporate actions, including dividend and interest payments, shareholder votes and redemptions and share buybacks.
The SEC approved the startup’s official submission in just 10 days, while Securitize worked for roughly six months to ensure the regulator understood how the company’s smart contracts would function by keeping a record of transfers. According to the company, it Is the first SEC-registered transfer agent with a working blockchain protocol, active securities issuers and integrations that allow digital securities enabled by its protocol to be traded on SEC-registered alternative trading systems (ATSs), including OpenFinance Network, tZERO and Sharespost.
Aside from its new registration status, Securitize recently announced its eleventh issued and outstanding digital security running on the platform under its protocol. Those securities have a total value of nearly $200 million, meanwhile, five of those are traded on a regulated, SEC-registered ATS. In just two funding rounds, the startup has raised $15 million. Currently, it has 43 customers, 11 of which issued securities on the public ethereum blockchain. It has also integrated tezos, although customers have yet to use that chain.