Today SBI Digital Assets, part of Japan’s SBI Holdings, announced an eight-figure investment in Switzerland’s Sygnum Bank. Four months ago, the two companies unveiled a joint investment fund to target digital asset startups.
Sygnum says this brings total funds raised in the last six months to $30 million. The bank holds licenses in both Switzerland and Singapore.
“Regulated banking platforms will play an essential role in meeting the growing wave of institutional adoption for digital assets,” said Fernando Luis Vasquez Cao, SBI Digital Asset Holdings CEO. “As a regulated and professional digital asset specialist, Sygnum is the right partner to help us deliver on our vision to make this asset class more trusted.”
Both firms are keen to promote their security token offering (STO) solutions. Last year SBI e-Sports issued a security token through SBI Securities using the BOOSTRY platform in which SBI is an investor.
And Sygnum has its STO solution Desygnate which it used to tokenize its own stock. The bank previously said it planned to have an IPO with the stock to be traded on the SIX Digital Exchange (SDX) as well as the future Singapore exchange, a joint venture between SBI and SDX. However, Sygnum also has a secondary market trading platform SygnEx.
Apart from commercializing these two platforms, Sygnum wants to use the funds to expand its custody services to include more staking services and yield generating products. Plus, it intends to offer other digital asset products beyond the recently launched options offerings.
Last year, Swiss digital asset bank SEBA raised a CHF 20 million ($22m) Series B, although that was very much a down round following a CHF 100 million ($111m) Series A. Another Swiss firm Lykke is reportedly seeking to raise CHF 15 million ($17m) for its digital asset platform. Lykke was founded by Richard Olsen, who previously co-founded forex broker OandA, acquired in 2018 by CVC Capital at an (unconfirmed) $175 million valuation.
During SBI’s investor presentation last week, the CEO outlined his digital assets vision. This included the above-mentioned SBI-SDX venture in Singapore, SBI’s digital assets tie-up with Boerse Stuttgart, plus a yet-to-be announced partner in London.