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Japan’s SBI plans blockchain digital stock exchange in Osaka

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Japan’s biggest blockchain fan SBI Holdings is planning a blockchain-powered digital securities exchange in Japan’s Osaka and Kobe areas.

SBI Holdings CEO Yoshitaka Kitao wants to grab the opportunity presented by China’s tightening grip on Hong Kong, according to a report by the Nikkei. The company has held talks with government authorities to create the right tax, regulatory and social environment for an international financial center.

The article referenced the Dojima Commodity Exchange in the region, which is involved in futures trading. It sounds as though SBI is interested in adding a wider range of products beyond commodity futures. Its interest in creating a new hub outside of Tokyo is consistent with the SBI strategy of regional regeneration.

SBI doesn’t lack interests when it comes to digital securities. Late last year, it invested in the Boerse Stuttgart Digital Exchange and announced plans to invest in Boerse Stuttgart Digital Ventures. Its stated aim was to develop a blockchain-based digital asset ecosystem in Europe and Asia. It also has investments in Securitize and Templum.

More recently, it invested in Nomura backed Japanese security token solution BOOSTRY. And it’s a member of self-regulatory body  Security Token Offering (STO) Association alongside other major incumbents such as SMBC Nikkei Securities, Tokai Tokyo Securities and Mizuho Securities.

Digital assets are just one plank of SBI’s blockchain strategy. Two of the other major areas are blockchain developments through SBI R3 Japan and payments. 

It’s an investor in Ripple and created MoneyTap a consumer facing p2p payments app with infrastructure which eases bank to bank communication and makes it cheaper. In recent days SBI announced the addition of two regional banks, Miyazaki Bank and High Bank. They join around 35 other investors which are also mostly regional apart from SMBC and Daiwa Securities.