ICO Service Launched By Online Bank Swissquotebr>
Switzerland-based Swissquote Bank SA is now allowing clients to participate in initial coin offerings (ICO) via its platform.
Swissquote, a member of the Swiss Bankers Association, is a banking group specializing in the provision of online financial and trading services. It offers services designed specifically for asset managers and corporate clients. The bank also offers an electronic asset management tool, ePrivate Banking, as well as traditional banking services, including mortgages, savings accounts and more specialized transactions, such as currency trading (eForex).
On Monday, Swissquote announced that it has become the first bank worldwide to offer its clients the opportunity to participate in ICOs. The service, which charges 1.25 percent of the sum contributed by investors, allows clients to buy tokens using Swiss francs from their trading accounts, while Swissquote handles execution of the trade and store tokens on behalf of customers.
“True to our philosophy to democratize finance by offering services that are simple and accessible to everyone, we are now offering our clients the opportunity to help grow startups,” said Swissquote CEO Mark Bürki.
The first ICO available on the service will be LakeDiamond, a spin-off company of the Federal Institute of Technology (EPFL). Founded in 2015, LakeDiamond manufactures diamonds for industrial use that are grown in its laboratory in machines it calls “diamond reactors.” It aims to raise CHF 60.5 million ($60.73M USD) in order to add 50 new reactors to its production line.
LakeDiamond’s LKD token, which will be priced at CHF 0.55, is marketed as a payment token using Swiss financial regulator guidelines. Investors can use the tokens to buy minutes of time on the company’s diamond reactors and receive a corresponding share of the money gained from the sale of the diamonds produced during that period. Support for selling LKD on Swissquote’s platform is planned at a later stage. Exchange of LKD tokens on third-party cryptocurrency exchanges is also sought by LakeDiamond.
Swissquote explained on its website that it has “strict criteria that companies need to fulfill” for their tokens to be listed on its platform.
“As the first bank to offer this kind of services, we receive many requests from companies, be they start-up, scale-up or well established companies,” Swissquote said. “In this context, we defined strict criteria that companies need to fulfill. We consider only mature projects, ready to be launched, and want to review who the management is, what the business is, what the financials are and what the legal situation is. Then, we select the projects that we think will be of interest to our clients.”