Category Archives: Blockchain, Crypto, ICO Regulations

Ontario Securities Commission “Doesn’t Really Know What’s Going On” in Blockchain Fintech, Says Lawyer

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Crowdfund Insider | | Jul 9, 2018

The Ontario Securities Commission (OSC) published its 2018-2019 “Statement of Priorities” June 5th, but the document provides zero helpful guidance to Ontario companies trying to engage with cutting-edge blockchain-based financial technologies, says Toronto-based blockchain lawyer Amy ter Haar.

The “OSC…Statement of Priorities for the Financial Year to End March 31, 2019” restates the commission’s ongoing commitment to investor protection, reduction of regulatory burden and the enhancement of staffing diversity.

But according to ter Haar, when it comes to areas like ICOs (Initial Coin Offerings), “tokenized securities” and blockchain for fintech, the agency is painfully vague.

“The entire investment community is looking to the OSC and CSA for guidance around blockchain and cryptocurrencies and it is disappointing that this hasn’t been highlighted as a priority,” wrote a frustrated Ter Haar via LinkedIN.

While it is clear from the “Statement of Priorities” that the OSC has many concerns in its purview, the document’s reliance on fuzzy platitudes regarding Fintech suggests sluggishness at commission and the downright neglect of a growth industry supercharging across the globe:

“There are two sides to industry health. Investor protection is just one side of it…However we categorize cryptocurrencies and tokenized assets, (they) will inform and shape securities regulation (in) the 21st century and influence the health of the entire industry. I can’t believe it isn’t identified as a strategic priority.”

Ter Haar is very clear about what’s needed. “We need KPIs (Key Performance Indicators) for all new and existing regulations (designed to protect ICO investors). We need a purpose and reporting model.”

Besides the trading of “crypto assets,” which is well underway globally, transnational industrial blockchains are being proposed to help manage complex supply chains and trade finance routes. Some are envisioning “self-sovereign identity” blockchains and systems for health records, with all these systems seeking to trot their innovations stealthily across jurisdictions.

The possibilities and risks are many, and regulators must stride in and get their hands dirty for the good of the citizenry.

“Blockchains, as cross-border networks, are not yet regulated by international or national laws. As long as data is managed on a global decentralized network, the protection and security concerns are numerous — especially in places with more autocratic governments, less corporate regulation, and populations already in peril – and this, in turn can impact Canadians,” says Ter Haar.

The entire investment community is looking to the OSC and CSA for guidance around #blockchain and cryptocurrencies and it is disappointing that this hasn’t been highlighted as a priority

It is a of time exponential change that calls for extraordinary leadership, and without precise, informed and visionary action, the OSC could even falter on its basic commitment to investor protection:

“With the ongoing blurring lines between the real and digital world, there have been increasing concerns of data ownership and access to services. With all of these innovations, there needs to be adequate protections in place to protect investors.”

More:  NCFA Response to OSC's statement of Priorities (Year end March 2019)

For Ter Haar, the OSC’s report on its own priorities is quite damning:

“I’m generally supportive of the overall direction of the OSC goals and proposed priorities…(However) provincial, state-level and international policy networks need to adapt and allow for innovations while providing adequate legislation that provides a base-level guidance on what can and can’t be accomplished with blockchain. I wish the OSC would lead the way but without naming this as a strategic priority, it just simply won’t happen and I wish it would. I can only conclude that they don’t really know what’s going on – which is really quite scary because if it isn’t their business and mandate to know, I don’t know whose it is.”

I wish the OSC would lead the way but without naming this as a strategic priority, it just simply won’t happen and I wish it would. I can only conclude that they don’t really know what’s going on

Editor’s Note: The OSC is not alone in its struggle to regulate the era of digital assets. The USA, for one, has only slowly outlined a regulatory approach to cryptocurrencies and the issuance of securities on blockchain. Today, in the US, it is generally accepted that all digital assets are regulated by existing securities law, but questions remain as to whether current rules need to be updated to better accommodate this type of Fintech innovation.

Some other countries have selected a path of creating a jurisdiction of preference for ICOs (or perhaps security tokens). Switzerland is regaining some of its financial luster as the Swiss Financial Market Supervisory Authority (FINMA) has partnered with the blockchain industry to encourage change. This past week, SIX Group – the parent company of the Swiss Stock Exchange – announced the launch of a regulated digital assets exchange. France has revealed its intent to embrace digital assets as well. Bespoke regulation is in the works and should become law by early 2019. Of course, Malta has recently passed legislation designed to boost blockchain innovation on the EU island nation.

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The National Crowdfunding & Fintech Association of Canada (NCFA Canada) is a cross-Canada non-profit actively engaged with cryptocurrency, blockchain, crowdfunding, alternative finance, fintech, P2P, ICO, STO, and online investing stakeholders globally. NCFA Canada provides education, research, industry stewardship, services, and networking opportunities to thousands of members and subscribers and works closely with industry, government, academia, community and eco-system partners and affiliates to create a strong and vibrant crowdfunding and fintech industry. Join Canada's Fintech & Funding Community today FREE! Or become a contributing member and get perks. For more information, please visit: www.ncfacanada.org

 

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Pymnts.com | Jul 17, 2018 When one tries to Google the phrase “millennials and mortgages,” something curious happens. Two different – and in some cases, mutually exclusive sounding – accounts of millennials and their home-buying habits, or lack thereof, emerge. Millennials are either dragging down the housing market because they can’t/won’t buy houses, or millennials are both leading the modern mortgage market and simultaneously leading it into the digital age. It’s a lot of apparently contradictory data about a rising generation of consumers that is often discussed, but not nearly as often well-understood. The upshot is that millennials are buying houses – but not at the rates that consumers in the same age cohort have historically bought homes. “Historically low mortgage rates and increasingly favorable employment conditions should have generated a far greater number of home purchases by young adults, especially in the last five years,” said Sam Khater, chief economist at Freddie Mac. And the fact that they haven’t has turned up a lot of data, revealing that the market for millennial real estate consumers remains an extremely uneven and, for many, rather uncertain place. The Complex Demographic Born between 1980 and 2000 (roughly), the millennial generation is a ...
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Bloomberg | By Michael Patterson and Andrea Tan | Jul 16, 2018 It might be the definitive sign that cryptocurrencies have arrived on Wall Street. CFA Institute, whose grueling three-level program has helped train more than 150,000 financial professionals, is adding topics on cryptocurrencies and blockchain to its Level I and II curriculums for the first time next year. Material for the 2019 exams will be released in August, giving candidates their first opportunity to start logging a recommended 300 hours of study time. CFA added the topics, part of a new reading called Fintech in Investment Management, after industry participants showed surging interest in surveys and focus groups. The worlds of finance and crypto have become increasingly intertwined after last year’s Bitcoin boom, with regulated futures now trading in Chicago, blue-chip firms like Goldman Sachs Group Inc. dabbling in digital assets, and scores of Wall Streeters joining crypto-related startups. More:  Traders With Pockets Full of Crypto Quit Wall Street While digital coins have tumbled in 2018 and the real-world impact of blockchain ventures has thus far been limited, some observers say the technology could ultimately transform swathes of the global financial system. “We saw the field advancing more quickly ...
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BNN Bloomberg | Nisha Gopalan and Andy Mukherjee | Jul 14, 2018 (Bloomberg Opinion) -- Can’t code, or speak Bahasa? Didn’t go to school with a CEO’s son or daughter? A robot will take your trading seat. Read on if you want to save your job. The threat from automation is in the flows part of banks’ global markets business, the most important chunk of the biggest division of investment banking. Investment banks garner 70 percent of their revenue from global markets, made up of trading stocks and bonds, as well as structuring derivatives products and financing; the remaining 30 percent comes from advisory services like shepherding M&As or helping companies raise equity and debt. The higher-margin areas within markets — from structuring to swaps — is relationship-oriented, and therefore (relatively) safe from robot overlords. And it happens to be a big contributor to the 70 percent pie, especially in Asia, where commissions on equities and fixed-income trades are sinking fast, and language and client connections play a big role. Good news? Read on. With the flows business comprising 51 percent of banks’ global markets revenue of $109.8 billion last year, according to Coalition data, automation of even vanilla trades is no small threat. Besides, the 30 percent ...
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Lifehacks for When a Robot Wants Your Job
Crowdfund Insider | Cali Haan | Jul 9, 2018 The Ontario Securities Commission (OSC) published its 2018-2019 “Statement of Priorities” June 5th, but the document provides zero helpful guidance to Ontario companies trying to engage with cutting-edge blockchain-based financial technologies, says Toronto-based blockchain lawyer Amy ter Haar. The “OSC…Statement of Priorities for the Financial Year to End March 31, 2019” restates the commission’s ongoing commitment to investor protection, reduction of regulatory burden and the enhancement of staffing diversity. But according to ter Haar, when it comes to areas like ICOs (Initial Coin Offerings), “tokenized securities” and blockchain for fintech, the agency is painfully vague. “The entire investment community is looking to the OSC and CSA for guidance around blockchain and cryptocurrencies and it is disappointing that this hasn’t been highlighted as a priority,” wrote a frustrated Ter Haar via LinkedIN. While it is clear from the “Statement of Priorities” that the OSC has many concerns in its purview, the document’s reliance on fuzzy platitudes regarding Fintech suggests sluggishness at commission and the downright neglect of a growth industry supercharging across the globe: “There are two sides to industry health. Investor protection is just one side of it…However we categorize cryptocurrencies ...
Read More
Ontario Securities Commission “Doesn’t Really Know What’s Going On” in Blockchain Fintech, Says Lawyer
About NCFA Canada | C. Asano | July 9, 2018 TORONTO, JUL 9, 2018 – The National Crowdfunding & Fintech Association of Canada (NCFA) today announced that Charlene Cieslik, Chief Anti-Money Laundering Officer (CAMLO) of Coinsquare, has joined the Association`s growing Advisory Group to advise on the areas Compliance and Anti-Money Laundering (view). Charlene Cieslik is the Chief Anti Money Laundering Officer of Coinsquare, Canada's most secure digital asset exchange for buying bitcoin, ethereum, and other digital currencies.  During her 20-year career, Charlene has held roles as the Chief Compliance Officer, Chief Anti-Money Laundering Officer, Chief Anti-Bribery Officer, and Chief Privacy Officer at several Canadian and Foreign scheduled banks, where she was responsible for the development, remediation, and execution of AML/ATF, anti-bribery, regulatory, and privacy programs. Charlene has worked with several “Big 4” accounting firms and a Canadian fintech company, where she has assisted global financial institutions with AML/ATF program development, particularly with post-regulatory exam remediation and AML/ATF investigations. Charlene holds a Master’s degree in Criminology from the University of Toronto, is a Certified Anti-Money Laundering Specialist, and was an original founder of the Toronto ACAMS Chapter.  She has lectured as a Professor at Seneca College and currently teaches in ...
Read More
Charlene Cieslik, Chief Anti-Money Laundering Officer of Coinsquare, Joins the National Crowdfunding & Fintech Association of Canada’s Advisory Group
Crowdfund Insider | JD Alois | Jul 2, 2018 In a significant policy move by the UK government, the threshold for investment crowdfunding has been upped to €8 million thus matching the recent change by Germany which announced the same funding limit. This increase is due to a change in the Prospectus Directive. In the UK, there is no limit on how much a crowdfunding platform may raise online. But a rule requiring a full blown prospectus at €5 million has, in effect, created a significant speed bump for investment crowdfunding platforms – one that has rarely been breached due to the cost of creating and complying with a prospectus requirement. The change announced today, should have an important impact on UK crowdfunding platforms as it will help make the online capital formation industry far more viable as issuers seek larger funding amounts raised via the issuance of securities online. In the early days of UK crowdfunding most issuers raised smaller seed round amounts. Today, issuers span a far wider range of funding requirements from seed stage to scale up. Frequently, these offerings are done in partnership with professional investors such as VCs or experienced angels. See:  Competition Bureau weighs in on ...
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Charlene Cieslik, Chief Anti-Money Laundering Officer of Coinsquare, Joins the National Crowdfunding & Fintech Association of Canada’s Advisory Group

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About NCFA Canada | C. Asano | July 9, 2018

TORONTO, JUL 9, 2018 – The National Crowdfunding & Fintech Association of Canada (NCFA) today announced that Charlene Cieslik, Chief Anti-Money Laundering Officer (CAMLO) of Coinsquare, has joined the Association`s growing Advisory Group to advise on the areas Compliance and Anti-Money Laundering (view).

Charlene Cieslik is the Chief Anti Money Laundering Officer of Coinsquare, Canada's most secure digital asset exchange for buying bitcoin, ethereum, and other digital currencies.  During her 20-year career, Charlene has held roles as the Chief Compliance Officer, Chief Anti-Money Laundering Officer, Chief Anti-Bribery Officer, and Chief Privacy Officer at several Canadian and Foreign scheduled banks, where she was responsible for the development, remediation, and execution of AML/ATF, anti-bribery, regulatory, and privacy programs.

Charlene has worked with several “Big 4” accounting firms and a Canadian fintech company, where she has assisted global financial institutions with AML/ATF program development, particularly with post-regulatory exam remediation and AML/ATF investigations. Charlene holds a Master’s degree in Criminology from the University of Toronto, is a Certified Anti-Money Laundering Specialist, and was an original founder of the Toronto ACAMS Chapter.  She has lectured as a Professor at Seneca College and currently teaches in the Global Leadership Development Program at the University of Toronto on the subject of anti-money laundering and sanction compliance.

"I'm grateful for the honour to join the NCFA's Advisory Group. When it comes to securing financing for your venture, there are many powerful and impactful methods beyond traditional financing, and I'm excited to have the privilege of working to make more options accessible to entrepreneurs and investors - balancing the need for regulation, risk management, and possibilities of innovation while acknowledging the opportunities that transcend borders. The NCFA has built a stellar community that brings together thinkers and entrepreneurs in innovative technologies, and I'm looking forward to playing a role in expanding and building that community with the NCFA."

-- Charlene Cieslik, Chief Anti-money Laundering Officer, Coinsquare

“While global funding networks, protocols, models and digital asset infrastructure continue to evolve it’s critical that industry continues working with regulators and fintech champions to strike the right balance.  Charlene brings an incredible amount of experience to the table and is actively engaged in addressing the regulatory hurdles that need to be solved before these new technologies can scale and reach mass adoption.”  Craig Asano – CEO & Founder, NCFA

Source:  NCFA

# # #

 

MEDIA CONTACTS:
Craig Asano
Founder and CEO
NCFA Canada
416 618 0254
casano@ncfacanada.org


The National Crowdfunding & Fintech Association of Canada (NCFA Canada) is a cross-Canada non-profit actively engaged with cryptocurrency, blockchain, crowdfunding, alternative finance, fintech, P2P, ICO, STO, and online investing stakeholders globally. NCFA Canada provides education, research, industry stewardship, services, and networking opportunities to thousands of members and subscribers and works closely with industry, government, academia, community and eco-system partners and affiliates to create a strong and vibrant crowdfunding and fintech industry. Join Canada's Fintech & Funding Community today FREE! Or become a contributing member and get perks. For more information, please visit: www.ncfacanada.org

 

 

Click for News:

 

Pymnts.com | Jul 17, 2018 When one tries to Google the phrase “millennials and mortgages,” something curious happens. Two different – and in some cases, mutually exclusive sounding – accounts of millennials and their home-buying habits, or lack thereof, emerge. Millennials are either dragging down the housing market because they can’t/won’t buy houses, or millennials are both leading the modern mortgage market and simultaneously leading it into the digital age. It’s a lot of apparently contradictory data about a rising generation of consumers that is often discussed, but not nearly as often well-understood. The upshot is that millennials are buying houses – but not at the rates that consumers in the same age cohort have historically bought homes. “Historically low mortgage rates and increasingly favorable employment conditions should have generated a far greater number of home purchases by young adults, especially in the last five years,” said Sam Khater, chief economist at Freddie Mac. And the fact that they haven’t has turned up a lot of data, revealing that the market for millennial real estate consumers remains an extremely uneven and, for many, rather uncertain place. The Complex Demographic Born between 1980 and 2000 (roughly), the millennial generation is a ...
Read More
Millennials Turn To Crowdfunding For Mortgage Down Payments
Bloomberg | By Michael Patterson and Andrea Tan | Jul 16, 2018 It might be the definitive sign that cryptocurrencies have arrived on Wall Street. CFA Institute, whose grueling three-level program has helped train more than 150,000 financial professionals, is adding topics on cryptocurrencies and blockchain to its Level I and II curriculums for the first time next year. Material for the 2019 exams will be released in August, giving candidates their first opportunity to start logging a recommended 300 hours of study time. CFA added the topics, part of a new reading called Fintech in Investment Management, after industry participants showed surging interest in surveys and focus groups. The worlds of finance and crypto have become increasingly intertwined after last year’s Bitcoin boom, with regulated futures now trading in Chicago, blue-chip firms like Goldman Sachs Group Inc. dabbling in digital assets, and scores of Wall Streeters joining crypto-related startups. More:  Traders With Pockets Full of Crypto Quit Wall Street While digital coins have tumbled in 2018 and the real-world impact of blockchain ventures has thus far been limited, some observers say the technology could ultimately transform swathes of the global financial system. “We saw the field advancing more quickly ...
Read More
‘This Is Not a Passing Fad’: CFA Exam Adds Crypto, Blockchain Topics
Oracle Times | Andreas Townsend | Jul 9, 2018 The crypto world and the technology behind it are still intriguing for traders and investors as well from all over the world. A token burn is a common occurrence, and some crypto companies may decide to burn some of their tokens from the circulating supply for more reasons. This is known as coin burning, and it has been conducted by various token developers as a tool to increase demand. Binance coin burning is approaching Binance is on the verge of its quarterly coin buyback and burn of its Ethereum-based token Binance Coin (BNB). The company’s whitepaper explained how the coin burn works and states that “every quarter, we will use 20% of our profits to buy back BNB and destroy them until we buy 50% of all the BNB (100MM) back. All buy-back transactions will be announced on the blockchain. We eventually will destroy 100MM BNB, leaving 100MM BNB remaining.” The structure will make the coin more attractive to investors Binance has initially created 200 million BNB, and they promised that no more coins will be generated ever again. This structure is designed to make the coin more attractive to investors ...
Read More
Binance Coin Burn Is Around The Corner – How The Coin Burn Works
North American Clean Energy | Jul 15, 2018 Blockchain is coming to the energy world and its impact will be massive. It will accelerate the transition to renewables and give us real and immediate ways to combat global warming, incentivize the production of renewable energy, and replace fossil fuels. What is blockchain? If you’ve heard of Bitcoin, blockchain is the technology that powers it. Blockchain allows data to be recorded on a distributed ledger in a way that cannot be changed. Why does it matter? The key benefit of blockchain as a technology is that it enables parties that do not know each other or trust each other to do business together and still feel secure.  Applications running on the blockchain can take advantage of smart contracts that trigger certain events (for example, payment) when particular milestones are met – so long as some form of proof is presented that a particular milestone has been met. More:  Blockchain has the potential to do amazing things, but it needs a reboot Together, blockchain as a technology, and the advent of smart contracts running on it, have the potential to change everything, much the same way that internet technology changed everything in the ...
Read More
Blockchain and the Future of Energy
BNN Bloomberg | Nisha Gopalan and Andy Mukherjee | Jul 14, 2018 (Bloomberg Opinion) -- Can’t code, or speak Bahasa? Didn’t go to school with a CEO’s son or daughter? A robot will take your trading seat. Read on if you want to save your job. The threat from automation is in the flows part of banks’ global markets business, the most important chunk of the biggest division of investment banking. Investment banks garner 70 percent of their revenue from global markets, made up of trading stocks and bonds, as well as structuring derivatives products and financing; the remaining 30 percent comes from advisory services like shepherding M&As or helping companies raise equity and debt. The higher-margin areas within markets — from structuring to swaps — is relationship-oriented, and therefore (relatively) safe from robot overlords. And it happens to be a big contributor to the 70 percent pie, especially in Asia, where commissions on equities and fixed-income trades are sinking fast, and language and client connections play a big role. Good news? Read on. With the flows business comprising 51 percent of banks’ global markets revenue of $109.8 billion last year, according to Coalition data, automation of even vanilla trades is no small threat. Besides, the 30 percent ...
Read More
Lifehacks for When a Robot Wants Your Job
Crowdfund Insider | Cali Haan | Jul 9, 2018 The Ontario Securities Commission (OSC) published its 2018-2019 “Statement of Priorities” June 5th, but the document provides zero helpful guidance to Ontario companies trying to engage with cutting-edge blockchain-based financial technologies, says Toronto-based blockchain lawyer Amy ter Haar. The “OSC…Statement of Priorities for the Financial Year to End March 31, 2019” restates the commission’s ongoing commitment to investor protection, reduction of regulatory burden and the enhancement of staffing diversity. But according to ter Haar, when it comes to areas like ICOs (Initial Coin Offerings), “tokenized securities” and blockchain for fintech, the agency is painfully vague. “The entire investment community is looking to the OSC and CSA for guidance around blockchain and cryptocurrencies and it is disappointing that this hasn’t been highlighted as a priority,” wrote a frustrated Ter Haar via LinkedIN. While it is clear from the “Statement of Priorities” that the OSC has many concerns in its purview, the document’s reliance on fuzzy platitudes regarding Fintech suggests sluggishness at commission and the downright neglect of a growth industry supercharging across the globe: “There are two sides to industry health. Investor protection is just one side of it…However we categorize cryptocurrencies ...
Read More
Ontario Securities Commission “Doesn’t Really Know What’s Going On” in Blockchain Fintech, Says Lawyer
About NCFA Canada | C. Asano | July 9, 2018 TORONTO, JUL 9, 2018 – The National Crowdfunding & Fintech Association of Canada (NCFA) today announced that Charlene Cieslik, Chief Anti-Money Laundering Officer (CAMLO) of Coinsquare, has joined the Association`s growing Advisory Group to advise on the areas Compliance and Anti-Money Laundering (view). Charlene Cieslik is the Chief Anti Money Laundering Officer of Coinsquare, Canada's most secure digital asset exchange for buying bitcoin, ethereum, and other digital currencies.  During her 20-year career, Charlene has held roles as the Chief Compliance Officer, Chief Anti-Money Laundering Officer, Chief Anti-Bribery Officer, and Chief Privacy Officer at several Canadian and Foreign scheduled banks, where she was responsible for the development, remediation, and execution of AML/ATF, anti-bribery, regulatory, and privacy programs. Charlene has worked with several “Big 4” accounting firms and a Canadian fintech company, where she has assisted global financial institutions with AML/ATF program development, particularly with post-regulatory exam remediation and AML/ATF investigations. Charlene holds a Master’s degree in Criminology from the University of Toronto, is a Certified Anti-Money Laundering Specialist, and was an original founder of the Toronto ACAMS Chapter.  She has lectured as a Professor at Seneca College and currently teaches in ...
Read More
Charlene Cieslik, Chief Anti-Money Laundering Officer of Coinsquare, Joins the National Crowdfunding & Fintech Association of Canada’s Advisory Group
Crowdfund Insider | JD Alois | Jul 2, 2018 In a significant policy move by the UK government, the threshold for investment crowdfunding has been upped to €8 million thus matching the recent change by Germany which announced the same funding limit. This increase is due to a change in the Prospectus Directive. In the UK, there is no limit on how much a crowdfunding platform may raise online. But a rule requiring a full blown prospectus at €5 million has, in effect, created a significant speed bump for investment crowdfunding platforms – one that has rarely been breached due to the cost of creating and complying with a prospectus requirement. The change announced today, should have an important impact on UK crowdfunding platforms as it will help make the online capital formation industry far more viable as issuers seek larger funding amounts raised via the issuance of securities online. In the early days of UK crowdfunding most issuers raised smaller seed round amounts. Today, issuers span a far wider range of funding requirements from seed stage to scale up. Frequently, these offerings are done in partnership with professional investors such as VCs or experienced angels. See:  Competition Bureau weighs in on ...
Read More
UK Government Ups Crowdfunding without Prospectus to €8 Million – Matching Germany
Betakit | By Amira Zubairi | Jul 4, 2018 Several Canadian FinTechs have made announcements on the growth of their companies, launching new features and partnerships. Here’s the latest on these company updates. Skrumble Network raises $19.96 million Toronto-based Skrumble Network, which aims to create secure connections for communication, raised $19.96 million ($15 million USD) through its token crowd-sale. Skrumble Network said it raised the funding for its communication-centric blockchain network that will provide developers the infrastructure to build messaging apps. The company wants to help developers build messaging apps that feature secure connections, real-time voice and video calling, wallet integrations for in-context money transfers, and the ability to edit, save, and unsend messages. Skrumble Network said its broader goal is to address data privacy concerns and allow users to take back ownership of their personal data. The company uses a consensus-based algorithm derived from unique session IDs, which enable private peer-to-peer connections. “Social media has completely changed the face of communication, and now, data privacy and ownership is one of the biggest concerns of this time. 2.2 billion users around the world have trusted Facebook with their information; 87 million of those users received a wake-up call…when they got ...
Read More
Today in FinTech: Skrumble Network raises $19 million CAD in ICO, Goldmoney partners with Malbex Resources
SmartCompany | Dominic Powell | Jul 2, 2018 A raft of Australian fintechs have signed a newly minted code of practice to improve transparency and bolster confidence in the small business lending space. Released on Friday, the code was formulated and backed by Australia’s Small Business Ombudsman Kate Carnell, the Australian Finance Industry Association (AFIA), FinTech Australia, and lending advisory and SME advocate thebankdoctor.org, operated by Neil Slonim. Leading small business lending fintechs Capify, GetCapital, Moula, OnDeck, Prospa and Spotcap were all signatories to the code, which will require them to comply with a series of best practice principles when dealing with SME customers. Alongside pledging to meet all current legal and regulatory requirements for small business lending, the signatories have also agreed to introduce an easy to understand loan summary and contribute to a price comparison document being produced by the code’s organisers. See:  Peer-to-peer lending will help small businesses stay afloat This document will simply lay out all costs and fees associated with the fintech’s loans, including the total repayment amount, annual percentage rate, and the simple annual interest rate. Failure to comply with the code will see the offending fintech lender subject to an independent Code Compliance ...
Read More
Six Aussie fintech lenders sign on to code of practice to help SMEs get better loans

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Canadian Exchanges to Report Transactions Over $10k per Proposed Regulations

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Bitcoin.com | Avi Mizrahi | Jun 11, 2018

Canadian bitcoin investors and cryptocurrency traders are going to be subjected to an increased level of market surveillance soon if the government has its way. Once the proposed regulations are implemented, every transaction above $10,000 CAD will have to be reported.

Crypto Exchanges to Report as MSBs

The Department of Finance Canada has issued a Regulatory Impact Analysis Statement regarding proposed amendments to the country’s AML/ATF regime. The statement suggests that Canadian crypto exchanges will be treated as money service businesses (MSBs) and will have to report trades over a certain amount.

According to the proposed amendments published in the Canada Gazette, “Persons and entities that are ‘dealing in virtual currency’ would be financial entities or other entities deemed domestic or foreign MSBs, as the case may be. These ‘dealing in’ activities include virtual currency exchange services and value transfer services. As required of all MSBs, persons and entities dealing in virtual currencies would need to implement a full compliance program and register with FINTRAC. In addition, all reporting entities that receive $10,000 or more in virtual currency (e.g. deposits, any form of payment) would have record-keeping and reporting obligations.”

See:  Canada Seeks to Widen AML Compliance Net

 

Financial Action Task Force (FATF) Standards

The part about registering with FINTRAC (the Financial Transactions and Reports Analysis Centre of Canada) should not be too much of a hassle for the exchanges. Several Canadian exchanges have already taken it upon themselves to voluntarily do so in an effort to remedy regulatory uncertainty, as we recently reported. And the government concluded that compliance with the proposed rules should cost just $270,112 over a ten-year period.

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Pymnts.com | Jul 17, 2018 When one tries to Google the phrase “millennials and mortgages,” something curious happens. Two different – and in some cases, mutually exclusive sounding – accounts of millennials and their home-buying habits, or lack thereof, emerge. Millennials are either dragging down the housing market because they can’t/won’t buy houses, or millennials are both leading the modern mortgage market and simultaneously leading it into the digital age. It’s a lot of apparently contradictory data about a rising generation of consumers that is often discussed, but not nearly as often well-understood. The upshot is that millennials are buying houses – but not at the rates that consumers in the same age cohort have historically bought homes. “Historically low mortgage rates and increasingly favorable employment conditions should have generated a far greater number of home purchases by young adults, especially in the last five years,” said Sam Khater, chief economist at Freddie Mac. And the fact that they haven’t has turned up a lot of data, revealing that the market for millennial real estate consumers remains an extremely uneven and, for many, rather uncertain place. The Complex Demographic Born between 1980 and 2000 (roughly), the millennial generation is a ...
Read More
Millennials Turn To Crowdfunding For Mortgage Down Payments
Bloomberg | By Michael Patterson and Andrea Tan | Jul 16, 2018 It might be the definitive sign that cryptocurrencies have arrived on Wall Street. CFA Institute, whose grueling three-level program has helped train more than 150,000 financial professionals, is adding topics on cryptocurrencies and blockchain to its Level I and II curriculums for the first time next year. Material for the 2019 exams will be released in August, giving candidates their first opportunity to start logging a recommended 300 hours of study time. CFA added the topics, part of a new reading called Fintech in Investment Management, after industry participants showed surging interest in surveys and focus groups. The worlds of finance and crypto have become increasingly intertwined after last year’s Bitcoin boom, with regulated futures now trading in Chicago, blue-chip firms like Goldman Sachs Group Inc. dabbling in digital assets, and scores of Wall Streeters joining crypto-related startups. More:  Traders With Pockets Full of Crypto Quit Wall Street While digital coins have tumbled in 2018 and the real-world impact of blockchain ventures has thus far been limited, some observers say the technology could ultimately transform swathes of the global financial system. “We saw the field advancing more quickly ...
Read More
‘This Is Not a Passing Fad’: CFA Exam Adds Crypto, Blockchain Topics
Oracle Times | Andreas Townsend | Jul 9, 2018 The crypto world and the technology behind it are still intriguing for traders and investors as well from all over the world. A token burn is a common occurrence, and some crypto companies may decide to burn some of their tokens from the circulating supply for more reasons. This is known as coin burning, and it has been conducted by various token developers as a tool to increase demand. Binance coin burning is approaching Binance is on the verge of its quarterly coin buyback and burn of its Ethereum-based token Binance Coin (BNB). The company’s whitepaper explained how the coin burn works and states that “every quarter, we will use 20% of our profits to buy back BNB and destroy them until we buy 50% of all the BNB (100MM) back. All buy-back transactions will be announced on the blockchain. We eventually will destroy 100MM BNB, leaving 100MM BNB remaining.” The structure will make the coin more attractive to investors Binance has initially created 200 million BNB, and they promised that no more coins will be generated ever again. This structure is designed to make the coin more attractive to investors ...
Read More
Binance Coin Burn Is Around The Corner – How The Coin Burn Works
North American Clean Energy | Jul 15, 2018 Blockchain is coming to the energy world and its impact will be massive. It will accelerate the transition to renewables and give us real and immediate ways to combat global warming, incentivize the production of renewable energy, and replace fossil fuels. What is blockchain? If you’ve heard of Bitcoin, blockchain is the technology that powers it. Blockchain allows data to be recorded on a distributed ledger in a way that cannot be changed. Why does it matter? The key benefit of blockchain as a technology is that it enables parties that do not know each other or trust each other to do business together and still feel secure.  Applications running on the blockchain can take advantage of smart contracts that trigger certain events (for example, payment) when particular milestones are met – so long as some form of proof is presented that a particular milestone has been met. More:  Blockchain has the potential to do amazing things, but it needs a reboot Together, blockchain as a technology, and the advent of smart contracts running on it, have the potential to change everything, much the same way that internet technology changed everything in the ...
Read More
Blockchain and the Future of Energy
BNN Bloomberg | Nisha Gopalan and Andy Mukherjee | Jul 14, 2018 (Bloomberg Opinion) -- Can’t code, or speak Bahasa? Didn’t go to school with a CEO’s son or daughter? A robot will take your trading seat. Read on if you want to save your job. The threat from automation is in the flows part of banks’ global markets business, the most important chunk of the biggest division of investment banking. Investment banks garner 70 percent of their revenue from global markets, made up of trading stocks and bonds, as well as structuring derivatives products and financing; the remaining 30 percent comes from advisory services like shepherding M&As or helping companies raise equity and debt. The higher-margin areas within markets — from structuring to swaps — is relationship-oriented, and therefore (relatively) safe from robot overlords. And it happens to be a big contributor to the 70 percent pie, especially in Asia, where commissions on equities and fixed-income trades are sinking fast, and language and client connections play a big role. Good news? Read on. With the flows business comprising 51 percent of banks’ global markets revenue of $109.8 billion last year, according to Coalition data, automation of even vanilla trades is no small threat. Besides, the 30 percent ...
Read More
Lifehacks for When a Robot Wants Your Job
Crowdfund Insider | Cali Haan | Jul 9, 2018 The Ontario Securities Commission (OSC) published its 2018-2019 “Statement of Priorities” June 5th, but the document provides zero helpful guidance to Ontario companies trying to engage with cutting-edge blockchain-based financial technologies, says Toronto-based blockchain lawyer Amy ter Haar. The “OSC…Statement of Priorities for the Financial Year to End March 31, 2019” restates the commission’s ongoing commitment to investor protection, reduction of regulatory burden and the enhancement of staffing diversity. But according to ter Haar, when it comes to areas like ICOs (Initial Coin Offerings), “tokenized securities” and blockchain for fintech, the agency is painfully vague. “The entire investment community is looking to the OSC and CSA for guidance around blockchain and cryptocurrencies and it is disappointing that this hasn’t been highlighted as a priority,” wrote a frustrated Ter Haar via LinkedIN. While it is clear from the “Statement of Priorities” that the OSC has many concerns in its purview, the document’s reliance on fuzzy platitudes regarding Fintech suggests sluggishness at commission and the downright neglect of a growth industry supercharging across the globe: “There are two sides to industry health. Investor protection is just one side of it…However we categorize cryptocurrencies ...
Read More
Ontario Securities Commission “Doesn’t Really Know What’s Going On” in Blockchain Fintech, Says Lawyer
About NCFA Canada | C. Asano | July 9, 2018 TORONTO, JUL 9, 2018 – The National Crowdfunding & Fintech Association of Canada (NCFA) today announced that Charlene Cieslik, Chief Anti-Money Laundering Officer (CAMLO) of Coinsquare, has joined the Association`s growing Advisory Group to advise on the areas Compliance and Anti-Money Laundering (view). Charlene Cieslik is the Chief Anti Money Laundering Officer of Coinsquare, Canada's most secure digital asset exchange for buying bitcoin, ethereum, and other digital currencies.  During her 20-year career, Charlene has held roles as the Chief Compliance Officer, Chief Anti-Money Laundering Officer, Chief Anti-Bribery Officer, and Chief Privacy Officer at several Canadian and Foreign scheduled banks, where she was responsible for the development, remediation, and execution of AML/ATF, anti-bribery, regulatory, and privacy programs. Charlene has worked with several “Big 4” accounting firms and a Canadian fintech company, where she has assisted global financial institutions with AML/ATF program development, particularly with post-regulatory exam remediation and AML/ATF investigations. Charlene holds a Master’s degree in Criminology from the University of Toronto, is a Certified Anti-Money Laundering Specialist, and was an original founder of the Toronto ACAMS Chapter.  She has lectured as a Professor at Seneca College and currently teaches in ...
Read More
Charlene Cieslik, Chief Anti-Money Laundering Officer of Coinsquare, Joins the National Crowdfunding & Fintech Association of Canada’s Advisory Group
Crowdfund Insider | JD Alois | Jul 2, 2018 In a significant policy move by the UK government, the threshold for investment crowdfunding has been upped to €8 million thus matching the recent change by Germany which announced the same funding limit. This increase is due to a change in the Prospectus Directive. In the UK, there is no limit on how much a crowdfunding platform may raise online. But a rule requiring a full blown prospectus at €5 million has, in effect, created a significant speed bump for investment crowdfunding platforms – one that has rarely been breached due to the cost of creating and complying with a prospectus requirement. The change announced today, should have an important impact on UK crowdfunding platforms as it will help make the online capital formation industry far more viable as issuers seek larger funding amounts raised via the issuance of securities online. In the early days of UK crowdfunding most issuers raised smaller seed round amounts. Today, issuers span a far wider range of funding requirements from seed stage to scale up. Frequently, these offerings are done in partnership with professional investors such as VCs or experienced angels. See:  Competition Bureau weighs in on ...
Read More
UK Government Ups Crowdfunding without Prospectus to €8 Million – Matching Germany
Betakit | By Amira Zubairi | Jul 4, 2018 Several Canadian FinTechs have made announcements on the growth of their companies, launching new features and partnerships. Here’s the latest on these company updates. Skrumble Network raises $19.96 million Toronto-based Skrumble Network, which aims to create secure connections for communication, raised $19.96 million ($15 million USD) through its token crowd-sale. Skrumble Network said it raised the funding for its communication-centric blockchain network that will provide developers the infrastructure to build messaging apps. The company wants to help developers build messaging apps that feature secure connections, real-time voice and video calling, wallet integrations for in-context money transfers, and the ability to edit, save, and unsend messages. Skrumble Network said its broader goal is to address data privacy concerns and allow users to take back ownership of their personal data. The company uses a consensus-based algorithm derived from unique session IDs, which enable private peer-to-peer connections. “Social media has completely changed the face of communication, and now, data privacy and ownership is one of the biggest concerns of this time. 2.2 billion users around the world have trusted Facebook with their information; 87 million of those users received a wake-up call…when they got ...
Read More
Today in FinTech: Skrumble Network raises $19 million CAD in ICO, Goldmoney partners with Malbex Resources
SmartCompany | Dominic Powell | Jul 2, 2018 A raft of Australian fintechs have signed a newly minted code of practice to improve transparency and bolster confidence in the small business lending space. Released on Friday, the code was formulated and backed by Australia’s Small Business Ombudsman Kate Carnell, the Australian Finance Industry Association (AFIA), FinTech Australia, and lending advisory and SME advocate thebankdoctor.org, operated by Neil Slonim. Leading small business lending fintechs Capify, GetCapital, Moula, OnDeck, Prospa and Spotcap were all signatories to the code, which will require them to comply with a series of best practice principles when dealing with SME customers. Alongside pledging to meet all current legal and regulatory requirements for small business lending, the signatories have also agreed to introduce an easy to understand loan summary and contribute to a price comparison document being produced by the code’s organisers. See:  Peer-to-peer lending will help small businesses stay afloat This document will simply lay out all costs and fees associated with the fintech’s loans, including the total repayment amount, annual percentage rate, and the simple annual interest rate. Failure to comply with the code will see the offending fintech lender subject to an independent Code Compliance ...
Read More
Six Aussie fintech lenders sign on to code of practice to help SMEs get better loans

 


The National Crowdfunding & Fintech Association of Canada (NCFA Canada) is a cross-Canada non-profit actively engaged with cryptocurrency, blockchain, crowdfunding, alternative finance, fintech, P2P, ICO, and online investing stakeholders globally. NCFA Canada provides education, research, industry stewardship, services, and networking opportunities to thousands of members and subscribers and works closely with industry, government, academia, community and eco-system partners and affiliates to create a strong and vibrant crowdfunding and fintech industry. Join Canada's Fintech & Funding Community today FREE! Or become a contributing member and get perks. For more information, please visit: www.ncfacanada.org

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Ethereum Rises on Positive Comments by the SEC

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Crowdfund Insider | JD Alois | Jun 14, 2018

Ethereum rose dramatically today following the comments of William Hinman, Director of the Division of Corporate Finance at the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), who inserted a statement in a speech today that ended the question of Ethereum being a security. Hinman told an audience at Yahoo Finance in San Francisco;

“And putting aside the fundraising that accompanied the creation of Ether, based on my understanding of the present state of Ether, the Ethereum network and its decentralized structure, current offers and sales of Ether are not securities transactions.”

The reassuring comments not only helped Ethereum, but other cryptocurrencies followed higher in its wake.

CoinList co-founder and President Andy Bromberg commented on the news from the SEC that it doesn’t consider Ether or Bitcoin – for that matter, a security:

“The SEC’s recent comments are a validation of the possibility of non-securities tokens and a big step towards more definitive guidance on how and when individual tokens can be defined as non-securities. The precedent they are indicating here is a powerful one that will enable new projects to continue to flourish in the space.”

Of course, the comments by the SEC does not mean that Ethereum based initial coin offerings (ERC20 – ICOs) are in the clear. Most all of these offerings are more than likely securities when looking at recent comments by SEC Chair Jay Clayton. But what is encouraging is the fact that the agency is willing, and interested, in enabling crypto-innovation. Echoing comments by other staff members of the SEC, Hinman encouraged blockchain entrepreneurs to reach out to them before proceeding.

“We are happy to help promoters and their counsel work through these issues. We stand prepared to provide more formal interpretive or no-action guidance about the proper characterization of a digital asset in a proposed use. In addition, we recognize that there are numerous implications under the federal securities laws of a particular asset being considered a security...

Continue to the full article --> here

 

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Pymnts.com | Jul 17, 2018 When one tries to Google the phrase “millennials and mortgages,” something curious happens. Two different – and in some cases, mutually exclusive sounding – accounts of millennials and their home-buying habits, or lack thereof, emerge. Millennials are either dragging down the housing market because they can’t/won’t buy houses, or millennials are both leading the modern mortgage market and simultaneously leading it into the digital age. It’s a lot of apparently contradictory data about a rising generation of consumers that is often discussed, but not nearly as often well-understood. The upshot is that millennials are buying houses – but not at the rates that consumers in the same age cohort have historically bought homes. “Historically low mortgage rates and increasingly favorable employment conditions should have generated a far greater number of home purchases by young adults, especially in the last five years,” said Sam Khater, chief economist at Freddie Mac. And the fact that they haven’t has turned up a lot of data, revealing that the market for millennial real estate consumers remains an extremely uneven and, for many, rather uncertain place. The Complex Demographic Born between 1980 and 2000 (roughly), the millennial generation is a ...
Read More
Millennials Turn To Crowdfunding For Mortgage Down Payments
Bloomberg | By Michael Patterson and Andrea Tan | Jul 16, 2018 It might be the definitive sign that cryptocurrencies have arrived on Wall Street. CFA Institute, whose grueling three-level program has helped train more than 150,000 financial professionals, is adding topics on cryptocurrencies and blockchain to its Level I and II curriculums for the first time next year. Material for the 2019 exams will be released in August, giving candidates their first opportunity to start logging a recommended 300 hours of study time. CFA added the topics, part of a new reading called Fintech in Investment Management, after industry participants showed surging interest in surveys and focus groups. The worlds of finance and crypto have become increasingly intertwined after last year’s Bitcoin boom, with regulated futures now trading in Chicago, blue-chip firms like Goldman Sachs Group Inc. dabbling in digital assets, and scores of Wall Streeters joining crypto-related startups. More:  Traders With Pockets Full of Crypto Quit Wall Street While digital coins have tumbled in 2018 and the real-world impact of blockchain ventures has thus far been limited, some observers say the technology could ultimately transform swathes of the global financial system. “We saw the field advancing more quickly ...
Read More
‘This Is Not a Passing Fad’: CFA Exam Adds Crypto, Blockchain Topics
Oracle Times | Andreas Townsend | Jul 9, 2018 The crypto world and the technology behind it are still intriguing for traders and investors as well from all over the world. A token burn is a common occurrence, and some crypto companies may decide to burn some of their tokens from the circulating supply for more reasons. This is known as coin burning, and it has been conducted by various token developers as a tool to increase demand. Binance coin burning is approaching Binance is on the verge of its quarterly coin buyback and burn of its Ethereum-based token Binance Coin (BNB). The company’s whitepaper explained how the coin burn works and states that “every quarter, we will use 20% of our profits to buy back BNB and destroy them until we buy 50% of all the BNB (100MM) back. All buy-back transactions will be announced on the blockchain. We eventually will destroy 100MM BNB, leaving 100MM BNB remaining.” The structure will make the coin more attractive to investors Binance has initially created 200 million BNB, and they promised that no more coins will be generated ever again. This structure is designed to make the coin more attractive to investors ...
Read More
Binance Coin Burn Is Around The Corner – How The Coin Burn Works
North American Clean Energy | Jul 15, 2018 Blockchain is coming to the energy world and its impact will be massive. It will accelerate the transition to renewables and give us real and immediate ways to combat global warming, incentivize the production of renewable energy, and replace fossil fuels. What is blockchain? If you’ve heard of Bitcoin, blockchain is the technology that powers it. Blockchain allows data to be recorded on a distributed ledger in a way that cannot be changed. Why does it matter? The key benefit of blockchain as a technology is that it enables parties that do not know each other or trust each other to do business together and still feel secure.  Applications running on the blockchain can take advantage of smart contracts that trigger certain events (for example, payment) when particular milestones are met – so long as some form of proof is presented that a particular milestone has been met. More:  Blockchain has the potential to do amazing things, but it needs a reboot Together, blockchain as a technology, and the advent of smart contracts running on it, have the potential to change everything, much the same way that internet technology changed everything in the ...
Read More
Blockchain and the Future of Energy
BNN Bloomberg | Nisha Gopalan and Andy Mukherjee | Jul 14, 2018 (Bloomberg Opinion) -- Can’t code, or speak Bahasa? Didn’t go to school with a CEO’s son or daughter? A robot will take your trading seat. Read on if you want to save your job. The threat from automation is in the flows part of banks’ global markets business, the most important chunk of the biggest division of investment banking. Investment banks garner 70 percent of their revenue from global markets, made up of trading stocks and bonds, as well as structuring derivatives products and financing; the remaining 30 percent comes from advisory services like shepherding M&As or helping companies raise equity and debt. The higher-margin areas within markets — from structuring to swaps — is relationship-oriented, and therefore (relatively) safe from robot overlords. And it happens to be a big contributor to the 70 percent pie, especially in Asia, where commissions on equities and fixed-income trades are sinking fast, and language and client connections play a big role. Good news? Read on. With the flows business comprising 51 percent of banks’ global markets revenue of $109.8 billion last year, according to Coalition data, automation of even vanilla trades is no small threat. Besides, the 30 percent ...
Read More
Lifehacks for When a Robot Wants Your Job
Crowdfund Insider | Cali Haan | Jul 9, 2018 The Ontario Securities Commission (OSC) published its 2018-2019 “Statement of Priorities” June 5th, but the document provides zero helpful guidance to Ontario companies trying to engage with cutting-edge blockchain-based financial technologies, says Toronto-based blockchain lawyer Amy ter Haar. The “OSC…Statement of Priorities for the Financial Year to End March 31, 2019” restates the commission’s ongoing commitment to investor protection, reduction of regulatory burden and the enhancement of staffing diversity. But according to ter Haar, when it comes to areas like ICOs (Initial Coin Offerings), “tokenized securities” and blockchain for fintech, the agency is painfully vague. “The entire investment community is looking to the OSC and CSA for guidance around blockchain and cryptocurrencies and it is disappointing that this hasn’t been highlighted as a priority,” wrote a frustrated Ter Haar via LinkedIN. While it is clear from the “Statement of Priorities” that the OSC has many concerns in its purview, the document’s reliance on fuzzy platitudes regarding Fintech suggests sluggishness at commission and the downright neglect of a growth industry supercharging across the globe: “There are two sides to industry health. Investor protection is just one side of it…However we categorize cryptocurrencies ...
Read More
Ontario Securities Commission “Doesn’t Really Know What’s Going On” in Blockchain Fintech, Says Lawyer
About NCFA Canada | C. Asano | July 9, 2018 TORONTO, JUL 9, 2018 – The National Crowdfunding & Fintech Association of Canada (NCFA) today announced that Charlene Cieslik, Chief Anti-Money Laundering Officer (CAMLO) of Coinsquare, has joined the Association`s growing Advisory Group to advise on the areas Compliance and Anti-Money Laundering (view). Charlene Cieslik is the Chief Anti Money Laundering Officer of Coinsquare, Canada's most secure digital asset exchange for buying bitcoin, ethereum, and other digital currencies.  During her 20-year career, Charlene has held roles as the Chief Compliance Officer, Chief Anti-Money Laundering Officer, Chief Anti-Bribery Officer, and Chief Privacy Officer at several Canadian and Foreign scheduled banks, where she was responsible for the development, remediation, and execution of AML/ATF, anti-bribery, regulatory, and privacy programs. Charlene has worked with several “Big 4” accounting firms and a Canadian fintech company, where she has assisted global financial institutions with AML/ATF program development, particularly with post-regulatory exam remediation and AML/ATF investigations. Charlene holds a Master’s degree in Criminology from the University of Toronto, is a Certified Anti-Money Laundering Specialist, and was an original founder of the Toronto ACAMS Chapter.  She has lectured as a Professor at Seneca College and currently teaches in ...
Read More
Charlene Cieslik, Chief Anti-Money Laundering Officer of Coinsquare, Joins the National Crowdfunding & Fintech Association of Canada’s Advisory Group
Crowdfund Insider | JD Alois | Jul 2, 2018 In a significant policy move by the UK government, the threshold for investment crowdfunding has been upped to €8 million thus matching the recent change by Germany which announced the same funding limit. This increase is due to a change in the Prospectus Directive. In the UK, there is no limit on how much a crowdfunding platform may raise online. But a rule requiring a full blown prospectus at €5 million has, in effect, created a significant speed bump for investment crowdfunding platforms – one that has rarely been breached due to the cost of creating and complying with a prospectus requirement. The change announced today, should have an important impact on UK crowdfunding platforms as it will help make the online capital formation industry far more viable as issuers seek larger funding amounts raised via the issuance of securities online. In the early days of UK crowdfunding most issuers raised smaller seed round amounts. Today, issuers span a far wider range of funding requirements from seed stage to scale up. Frequently, these offerings are done in partnership with professional investors such as VCs or experienced angels. See:  Competition Bureau weighs in on ...
Read More
UK Government Ups Crowdfunding without Prospectus to €8 Million – Matching Germany
Betakit | By Amira Zubairi | Jul 4, 2018 Several Canadian FinTechs have made announcements on the growth of their companies, launching new features and partnerships. Here’s the latest on these company updates. Skrumble Network raises $19.96 million Toronto-based Skrumble Network, which aims to create secure connections for communication, raised $19.96 million ($15 million USD) through its token crowd-sale. Skrumble Network said it raised the funding for its communication-centric blockchain network that will provide developers the infrastructure to build messaging apps. The company wants to help developers build messaging apps that feature secure connections, real-time voice and video calling, wallet integrations for in-context money transfers, and the ability to edit, save, and unsend messages. Skrumble Network said its broader goal is to address data privacy concerns and allow users to take back ownership of their personal data. The company uses a consensus-based algorithm derived from unique session IDs, which enable private peer-to-peer connections. “Social media has completely changed the face of communication, and now, data privacy and ownership is one of the biggest concerns of this time. 2.2 billion users around the world have trusted Facebook with their information; 87 million of those users received a wake-up call…when they got ...
Read More
Today in FinTech: Skrumble Network raises $19 million CAD in ICO, Goldmoney partners with Malbex Resources
SmartCompany | Dominic Powell | Jul 2, 2018 A raft of Australian fintechs have signed a newly minted code of practice to improve transparency and bolster confidence in the small business lending space. Released on Friday, the code was formulated and backed by Australia’s Small Business Ombudsman Kate Carnell, the Australian Finance Industry Association (AFIA), FinTech Australia, and lending advisory and SME advocate thebankdoctor.org, operated by Neil Slonim. Leading small business lending fintechs Capify, GetCapital, Moula, OnDeck, Prospa and Spotcap were all signatories to the code, which will require them to comply with a series of best practice principles when dealing with SME customers. Alongside pledging to meet all current legal and regulatory requirements for small business lending, the signatories have also agreed to introduce an easy to understand loan summary and contribute to a price comparison document being produced by the code’s organisers. See:  Peer-to-peer lending will help small businesses stay afloat This document will simply lay out all costs and fees associated with the fintech’s loans, including the total repayment amount, annual percentage rate, and the simple annual interest rate. Failure to comply with the code will see the offending fintech lender subject to an independent Code Compliance ...
Read More
Six Aussie fintech lenders sign on to code of practice to help SMEs get better loans

 


The National Crowdfunding & Fintech Association of Canada (NCFA Canada) is a cross-Canada non-profit actively engaged with cryptocurrency, blockchain, crowdfunding, alternative finance, fintech, P2P, ICO, and online investing stakeholders globally. NCFA Canada provides education, research, industry stewardship, services, and networking opportunities to thousands of members and subscribers and works closely with industry, government, academia, community and eco-system partners and affiliates to create a strong and vibrant crowdfunding and fintech industry. Join Canada's Fintech & Funding Community today FREE! Or become a contributing member and get perks. For more information, please visit: www.ncfacanada.org

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Canadian securities regulators provide additional guidance on securities law implications for offerings of tokens

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CSA | Staff Notice 46-308 | June 11, 2018

Montréal  The Canadian Securities Administrators (CSA) today published CSA Staff Notice 46-308 Securities Law Implications for Offerings of Tokens, which provides additional guidance on the applicability of securities laws to offerings of coins or tokens, including ones that are commonly referred to as “utility tokens.”

“Since publishing initial guidance, we have engaged with numerous businesses considering token offerings and have found that most of these offerings involve securities,” said Louis Morisset, CSA Chair and President and CEO of the Autorité des marchés financiers. “Our notice sets out additional guidance based on situations we have seen to date and common inquiries we have received from businesses and their advisors.”

CSA Staff Notice 46-308 outlines specific situations that may have an implication on the presence of one or more of the elements of an investment contract in the context of an offering of coins or tokens.

This notice supplements the CSA’s August 2017 publication of CSA Staff Notice 46-307 Cryptocurrency Offerings, which outlines how securities law requirements may apply to initial coin offerings, initial token offerings, cryptocurrency investment funds and the cryptocurrency platforms trading these products.

See: 

Any business planning to raise capital through an offering of coins or tokens should consider whether it involves the distribution of a security. In order to avoid costly regulatory surprises, businesses are encouraged to consult qualified securities legal counsel about the potential application of, and possible approaches required to comply with, securities legislation. Businesses should also contact their local securities regulatory authority to discuss possible flexible approaches to complying with securities laws, including time-limited exemptive relief.

The CSA Regulatory Sandbox is an initiative of the CSA to support financial technology (fintech) businesses seeking to offer innovative products, services and applications in Canada. The CSA has granted, through the CSA Regulatory Sandbox, exemptive relief from certain securities law requirements to firms in the context of offerings of coins or tokens that involve the distribution of securities, subject to conditions to ensure adequate investor protection.

CSA staff monitor cryptocurrency offerings activity and will continue to take action against businesses that do not comply with securities laws.

The CSA, the council of the securities regulators of Canada’s provinces and territories, co-ordinates and harmonizes regulation for the Canadian capital markets.

Source:  Security law implications for Offerings of Tokens

Download CSA Staff Notice 46-308 --> here

 


The National Crowdfunding & Fintech Association of Canada (NCFA Canada) is a cross-Canada non-profit actively engaged with cryptocurrency, blockchain, crowdfunding, alternative finance, fintech, P2P, ICO, and online investing stakeholders globally. NCFA Canada provides education, research, industry stewardship, services, and networking opportunities to thousands of members and subscribers and works closely with industry, government, academia, community and eco-system partners and affiliates to create a strong and vibrant crowdfunding and fintech industry. Join Canada's Fintech & Funding Community today FREE! Or become a contributing member and get perks. For more information, please visit: www.ncfacanada.org

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SEC chief says agency won’t change securities laws to cater to cryptocurrencies

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CNBC | | Jun 6, 2018

  • The head of the Securities and Exchange Commission Chairman made it clear Wednesday that the agency won't be bending the rules for cryptocurrency when it comes to defining what is or what isn't a security.
  • "We are not going to do any violence to the traditional definition of security that has worked for a long time," SEC Chairman Jay Clayton told CNBC Wednesday.
  • The agency is also not adjusting rules for initial coin offerings, and Clayton underlined that tokens or digital assets used in that fundraising process are securities.

The head of the Securities and Exchange Commission made it clear Wednesday that the agency won't bend the rules for cryptocurrency when it comes to defining what is or what isn't a security.

"We are not going to do any violence to the traditional definition of a security that has worked for a long time," U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission Chairman Jay Clayton told CNBC Wednesday. "We've been doing this a long time, there's no need to change the definition."

Clayton said the U.S. has built a $19 trillion securities market that's "the envy of the world" following the current rules.

See:  Don Tapscott urges ‘sensible’ cryptocurrency regulations

The agency is not adjusting rules for the fundraising process known as initial coin offerings, or ICOs, either, he said. ICOs have raised $9.1 billion this year alone, according to the latest research from Autonomous Next.

"If you have an ICO or a stock, and you want to sell it in a private placement, follow the private placement rules," Clayton said "If you want to do any IPO with a token, come see us."

The SEC is "happy to help you do that public offering" if issuers take the responsibility SEC laws require, he said.

The chairman also addressed a growing debate over which cryptocurrencies should fall under SEC jurisdiction.

"Cryptocurrencies: These are replacements for sovereign currencies, replace the dollar, the euro, the yen with bitcoin," Clayton said. "That type of currency is not a security."

A token, or a digital assets used in a fundraising process known as an initial coin offering, or ICO, are securities by Clayton's definition.

"A token, a digital asset, where I give you my money and you go off and make a venture, and in return for giving you my money I say 'you can get a return' that is a security and we regulate that," Clayton said. "We regulate the offering of that security and regulate the trading of that security."

Whether an asset is a security right now follows the "Howey Test." The ruling comes from a 1946 U.S. Supreme Court case that classifies a security as an investment of money in a common enterprise, in which the investor expects profits primarily from others' efforts.

Clayton made it clear in March that all ICOs constitute securities, and reiterated that Wednesday saying "if it's a security, we're regulating it."

But companies tied to those cryptocurrencies have argued that some should be fall under a different category, in many cases because of their utility.

The financial watchdog has been balancing consumer protection and innovation in what has become multi-billion dollar cryptocurrency market. The market capitalization of bitcoin alone is more than $130 billion, according to CoinMarketCap.

On Tuesday, the SEC picked a new leader for its emerging cryptocurrency division. Valerie Szczepanik, who already worked at the agency, was promoted to a role that didn't exist until this week: Associate Director of the Division of Corporation Finance and Senior Advisor for Digital Assets and Innovation.

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The National Crowdfunding & Fintech Association of Canada (NCFA Canada) is a cross-Canada non-profit actively engaged with cryptocurrency, blockchain, crowdfunding, alternative finance, fintech, P2P, ICO, and online investing stakeholders globally. NCFA Canada provides education, research, industry stewardship, services, and networking opportunities to thousands of members and subscribers and works closely with industry, government, academia, community and eco-system partners and affiliates to create a strong and vibrant crowdfunding and fintech industry. Join Canada's Fintech & Funding Community today FREE! Or become a contributing member and get perks. For more information, please visit: www.ncfacanada.org

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Gibraltar: Where Is The Best Country To Launch An ICO – Switzerland Or Gibraltar?

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Mondaq | Hassans by Chloe Oppenheimer | May 29, 2018

As the owner of a start-up or a crypto investor researching blockchain-friendly jurisdictions, no doubt you have already read numerous articles comparing the various crypto-friendly countries and noticed the same names keep cropping up. In this article we assume you have now narrowed your choice down to two options, and are currently wondering which of the two is the best country to launch your ICO, Switzerland or Gibraltar?

Both jurisdictions are small, multilingual nations with a solid financial background and cutting-edge infrastructure, each vying to become the crypto capital of Europe.

In one corner; a global banking behemoth known for its clockwork efficiency. In the other; a vibrant commercial powerhouse to whom we owe the phrase, "Steady as the Rock of Gibraltar."

We put both jurisdictions through a full nine rounds of critical benchmarks to determine which contender is the clear winner.

1. Blockchain friendly

Switzerland has been quick to embrace blockchain, which is hardly surprising given its status as "the global leader in terms of cross border private banking" and "one of the largest asset management and fund distribution markets in Europe", according to PwC. [Source]

Alongside traditional financial hubs like Zurich and Geneva, the small town of Zug, once a sleepy lakeside fishing town, has been transformed by the blockchain industry. It now plays host to many influential entities, including the Ethereum Foundation, and brands itself as "the Crypto Valley".

Gibraltar, meanwhile, has its own trendy title – "the Crypto Harbour" – and has also enjoyed massive success within numerous competitive sectors, its most recent success being the field of online gaming. Gibraltar is the foremost jurisdiction in the world for the industry, being home to the biggest and best online gaming companies with the highest pedigree. Not only does Gibraltar have experience in developing tech industries, with the necessary resources to support future blockchain industries, its success in gaming is proof that the jurisdiction can nurture a once-new and peripheral business model into a mature, reputable and lucrative industry.

Result: Draw

 

2. Regulation

In regulatory terms, both countries take a very similar stance. They both seek to find the middle ground to support and promote innovation within the distributed ledger technology industry, while simultaneously protecting the integrity of their respective financial services industries and global reputation.

Switzerland published its guidance notes for ICOs in February and is looking to introduce a special FinTech licence though it needs to move fast if it is to catch-up with its rivals.

With a small population of approximately 33,573 people, Gibraltar enjoys the advantages of being extremely agile, having a pro-business and friendly government, a regulator that has vast expert knowledge on distributed ledger technology and understands the crucial balance between protecting consumers through regulated conduct while encouraging innovation. It also enjoys a close-knit professional services community (including law firms, accounting firms, banks and fiduciary service providers) who are actively embracing DLT-related business and quality ICOs.

All this translates into swift, decisive action with an ability to quickly change tack in response to an ever-changing FinTech landscape. As a result Gibraltar is much farther ahead of Switzerland in regulatory terms, with a working set of DLT Regulations since January 2018.

In March, the Gibraltar Financial Services Commission published its Token Regulation Policy Document. The regulations themselves are set to come into effect in the coming months. In the meantime, Gibraltar is already welcoming a steady stream of eager DLT Licence applicants and quality ICO projects.

Result: Gibraltar wins – more proactive, nimble and much further ahead on regulation.

3. Exchanges and Sales Platforms

One of the largest crypto trading platforms in the world, Bitfinex, recently announced its plans to move to Switzerland. Gibraltar's DLT Regulations, however, have attracted numerous crypto-currency exchanges to the jurisdiction, such as BTCC, CEX and eToro and is, therefore, once again several steps ahead. Gibraltar is also home to TokenMarket who was recently awarded 'The Best ICO Advisor' at Cryptocurrency World Expo Berlin Summit 2018, and the Gibraltar Blockchain Exchange which, earlier this year, successfully completed its Rock Token sale.

Result: Gibraltar wins – although Switzerland, and Zug in particular, is a prime contender in this area, Gibraltar remains one step ahead.

4. Banking

The one activity we associate with Switzerland more than any other (even skiing), is banking. Swiss banks enjoy an illustrious reputation globally for professionalism and discretion. Switzerland has banks which happily allow crypto operators to open accounts, subject to compliance with their client on-boarding requirements.
Gibraltar also has a strong banking sector and a solid financial reputation globally. Plus, its banks also allow crypto operators to set up accounts.

Result: Draw – Swiss banking may be world famous, though does not necessarily offer any significant advantage over equally viable and well respected Gibraltar banking options.

5. Tax

Switzerland's corporate tax rate varies by region and it's worth noting that Zug, the "Crypto Valley", has a comparatively high one, at 14.6%, especially when compared Gibraltar's corporate tax rate of just 10%. These considerable savings, plus an additional set of low tax or zero-tax benefits, mean that, once again, Gibraltar has the edge.

Result: Gibraltar wins – the jurisdiction's 10% Corporate Tax wins out over Zug's 14.6%.

6. Currency

Investors consider Swiss Francs to be a strong, stable currency, particularly popular during periods of volatility. Gibraltar, meanwhile, uses the Gibraltar Pound as its currency, which, although minted in Gibraltar, enjoys total parity with the British Pound.

Result: Draw – Swiss Francs, like gold, prove popular in times of uncertainty. The Pound, meanwhile, remains one of the world's top traded currencies, alongside the Dollar, Euro and Yen. We accept volatility as part and parcel of contemporary crypto trading, but still require stable fiat currencies for day-to-day business operations to function properly. Both jurisdictions provide this.

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The National Crowdfunding & Fintech Association of Canada (NCFA Canada) is a cross-Canada non-profit actively engaged with cryptocurrency, blockchain, crowdfunding, alternative finance, fintech, P2P, ICO, and online investing stakeholders globally. NCFA Canada provides education, research, industry stewardship, services, and networking opportunities to thousands of members and subscribers and works closely with industry, government, academia, community and eco-system partners and affiliates to create a strong and vibrant crowdfunding and fintech industry.  Join Canada's Fintech & Funding Community today FREE!  Or become a contributing member and get perks. For more information, please visit:  www.ncfacanada.org

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