Yesterday Japan’s SBI announced it invested in BOOSTRY, which has an open source blockchain platform for tokenizing digital assets or security tokens. BOOSTRY was set up last year as a joint venture between Nomura and Nomura Research Institute (NRI), with the latter owning a 34% stake. NRI’s shareholding is unchanged, but SBI now owns 10%, leaving Nomura with 56%.
The companies aim to pool their knowledge with regard to blockchain and security tokens. Both have significant experience, with Nomura doing the groundwork with BOOSTRY and SBI making numerous investments and deals which we previously outlined. BOOSTRY positioned the deal as “Promotion of the Securities Token Business”.
BOOSTRY, Nomura and SBI are members of Japan’s Security Token Offering (STO) Association alongside many of Japan’s largest securities firms such a SMBC, Daiwa, Tokai Tokyo and Rakuten. The major absentee is Japan’s largest banking group MUFG which has its own STO research initiative. Another member of the Japan STO Association is tokenization firm Securitize which received investment from SBI, Nomura and MUFG.
Additionally, Nomura and SBI share an investment in enterprise blockchain firm R3, with SBI claiming to be R3’s largest outside investor. It also has a joint venture SBI R3 Japan in which SMBC is becoming a shareholder.
Meanwhile, BOOSTRY initially focused on bonds, and four months ago, it performed its first tokenized issuance of NRI bonds directly to the public. Since then, it inked a deal with Fujitsu to focus on integration with separate platforms. The technology company has expertise in blockchain interoperability and is a major contributor to the Hyperleger Cactus protocol, which focuses on interoperability.
BOOSTRY also has a different kind of interoperability plan. Its “ibet” blockchain solution, which it plans to open source, uses Digital Asset’s DAML smart contract language. The advantage is that DAML works across most of the enterprise blockchain protocols. Hence different STO platforms could potentially use common code.