Tag Archives: fintech startup

Bitcoin Barista of the Day Award: BnkToTheFuture

When it comes to corporate monikers, MarketsMuse fintech curators are big fans of catchy names and have made it a New Year’s resolution to compile and share a weekly list of firms that earn special recognition within the burgeoning world of blockchain, bitcoin and crypto handles. And, the winner for the first week of 2018 is”BnkToTheFuture.” No, its not a futuristic bank run by Doc Brown and no, Marty McFly is not the crypto credit lending officer. Its a current generation “cool kids only investment bank” that appears to be based in Hong Kong and staffed by the now ubiquitous-to-the-industry line-up of slick looking folks from UK, HK and of course, Eastern Europe. Arguably, the management team can be considered blockchain industry pioneers given this firm was formed way back in 2011.

Our thanks for guidance to this “Global FinTech, Bitcoin and blockchain online investment platform” goes to TradersMag Senior Editor John D’Antona  who pushed this release to us, which is chock full of  mentions of ‘crypto industry celebrities’ who recently joined the firm’s advisory board. Our compliance desk loved the “About BnkToTheFuture” section of their press release; it conforms beautifully with global financial industry best practice protocols: “The platform is in line with international financial regulations and over $200m has been invested in deals listed on its platform.”  Below is an excerpt of the news story:

Simon Dixon, CEO BankToTheFuture

BnkToTheFuture today announced its token sale advisory board, with executives from Civic, Smith + Crown, Abra, BitAngels, and more signing on to help BnkToTheFuture launch a tokenized secondary market and due diligence platform for equity tokens. BnkToTheFuture’s online investment platform already brings vetted deals to qualifying investors and has invested in many of the most valuable companies in the sector, and will now incorporate its BFT cryptocurrency token to reward due diligence, deal flow analysis and investor relations on prospective and current deals.

“Investors in today’s burgeoning ICO landscape are seeking more professionalism, accountability, and compliance, while equity investors are seeking greater liquidity and trading,” said Civic CEO and BnkToTheFuture Identity/KYC Advisor Vinny Lingham. “BnkToTheFuture provides this gap in service, and I’m excited to see this project grow through its next phase.”   The company’s press release includes: “The platform is in line with international financial regulations and over $200m has been invested in deals listed on its platform including BitFinex, BitStamp, Kraken, ShapeShift and over 100 others.”

Joining BnkToTheFuture’s advisory board alongside Lingham are Jonathan Smith, Civic Co-Founder and CTO; Bill Barhydt, CEO of Abra; Diego Gutierrez Zaldivar, CEO and Co-Founder of Rootstock (RSK), Michael Terpin, CEO of Transform Group, Founder of CoinAgenda, and Co-Founder of BitAngels; Sunny Ray, President of Unocoin; David Johnston, Chairman of Factom and Co-Founder of BitAngels; Li Huo, Director at Huobi; Adam Vaziri, Blockchain lawyer and Director at Diacol; Brian Lio, CEO at Smith + Crown; Matt Chwierut, Researcher at Smith + Crown; Tony Simonovsky, CEO of InsightCryp.to; and David Drake, Chairman at LDJ Capital. BnkToTheFuture will continue to list new advisors here.

Whether your company is a fintech startup that is planning a private placement offering, a crypto concern with a custom token offering that is seeking to raise capital from qualified or accredited investors via a Initial Coin Offering (ICO), or if you are fast growth firm setting the stage for an initial public offering (IPO), a properly prepared offering prospectus or offering memorandum is required by your investors and industry regulators that govern securities offerings. Issuers seeking affordable investor document solutions rely on experts at Prospectus.com.

“While building BnkToTheFuture’s advisory board for our upcoming token launch, we sought leaders in the blockchain industry and those who have been consistently involved advocating for Bitcoin from very early on to help guide our efforts to further develop a transparent platform compliant with regulatory requirements,” said Simon Dixon, CEO of BnkToTheFuture. “We’re confident that our advisory team of experts will be instrumental in this process.”

Already popular as an online investment platform with 45,000 qualifying investors and over $200 million invested in rounds listed on its platform including companies like Kraken, BitFinex, BitStamp, ShapeShift and others, BnkToTheFuture will incorporate blockchain technology to allow for the trading of equity tokens and will issue its own token, BFT, to support deal flow analysis, due diligence and investor relations on the platform. BFT will be available in a public token sale in February 2018.

If you’ve got a hot insider tip, a bright idea, or if you’d like to get visibility for your brand through MarketsMuse via subliminal content marketing, advertorial, blatant shout-out, spotlight article, news release etc., please reach out to our Senior Editor via cmo@marketsmuse.com.

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Symphony Scheme to Displace Bloomberg Chat is Challenged by Regulators

Fintech startup instant message platform Symphony is hearing the sound of trumpets coming from NY Regulators and Bloomberg-challenger backed by consortium of banks now being  questioned about deletion and encryption process.

MarketsMuse curators might be a little slow this week in view of following delayed post regarding the roll-out of the instant message chat platform built by a consortium of top banks and intended to displace their dependence on Bloomberg LP…but better late than never…As Symphony Communications Services prepares to launch its much-anticipated messaging service, New York’s financial regulator is raising questions about whether the system can assure that bank communication records will be preserved for overseers.  The following is courtesy of American Banker.

NY State Regulator Anthony Albanese
NY State Regulator Anthony Albanese

In a letter to Symphony CEO David Gurle (blog post title image), Acting Superintendent of the New York State Department of Financial Services Anthony Albanese asked for further information about Symphony’s document retention capabilities, policies and features.

Noting that “key evidence that regulators used to uncover and investigate” benchmark manipulation schemes has been found in chat rooms, Albanese expressed concern that some banks that are under investigation for rate-rigging are investors in Symphony and have indicated they plan to use it. The letter suggests that before firms begin using a new platform for market related communications, Albanese wants to be sure regulators will still be able to access and audit communications in the event that a firm may be involved in suspicious activity.

The regulator is taking particular interest in “data deletion, end-to-end-encryption, and open source features” of the Symphony platform, the letter said. Albanese said the department would also follow up with banks, requiring them to describe “how they will ensure that messages created using Symphony products will be retained.” The department said it plans to review banks’ responses about their plans to assess whether or not encryption could be used to obstruct regulatory and compliance review, whether firms plan to use deletion capabilities, and whether banks can ensure that employees won’t use open source capabilities “to circumvent compliance controls and regulatory review.”

In an emailed response, Symphony’s Gurley said the platform was designed with compliance in mind, and said the company plans to fully explain Symphony’s technology and its capabilities to regulators.

“Symphony is built on a foundation of security, compliance and privacy features that were built to enable our financial services and enterprise customers to meet their regulatory requirements,” the statement said, according to American Banker. “We look forward to explaining the various aspects of our communications platform to the New York Department of Financial Services.”

Led by Goldman, a group of financial firms invested $66 million in Symphony. The group, in turn, acquired Perzo Inc., a Palo Alto, Calif., company founded in 2012. Goldman, which led the investment among the financial firms, contributed its own internal-messaging developments to the venture.

In addition to Goldman, Bank of America Corp., Bank of New York Mellon Corp., BlackRock Inc., Citadel LLC, Citigroup Inc., Credit Suisse Group AG, Deutsche Bank AG, J.P. Morgan Chase & Co., Jefferies LLC, Maverick Capital Ltd., Morgan Stanley, Nomura Holdings Inc. and Wells Fargo & Co. invested in Symphony.