A London-based Bitcoin exchange has been awarded a full distributed ledger technology (DLT) licence by the Gibraltar Financial Services Commission (GFSC).
The licence enables Coinfloor, which was established in 2013, to store or transmit value belonging to others in Gibraltar under the blockchain. Additional licences are expected to be announced to other blockchain-based companies in the European nation in the coming weeks.
The Honourable Albert Isola, Gibraltar’s Minister for Commerce, said of the announcement that this is “another positive which shows that Gibraltar is open for business and ready to work with quality companies to provide a regulated road to market,” adding:
“We have championed internationally compliant, robust, and sensible legislation to regulate this revolutionary technology in Gibraltar while simultaneously striving to maintain the conditions that encourage further private sector innovation.”
Coinfloor is now fully compliant with Gibraltar’s DLT legislation. Introduced in January, it is a purpose-based legislative framework for companies that use blockchain or DLT. It allows firms to engage with regulators in a robust and quick manner while delivering the flexibility in the guidelines to evolve as the technology develops.
The licence award followed a rigorous application process for Coinfloor. Following the introduction of its legislation, companies were invited to work with the GFSC to determine whether crypto activities would require licencing. Submissions were then sent to the financial regulator for an initial risk assessment. Applicants were then required to make in-person presentations to the GFSC. Here they outlined their business plan as well as how they were going to meet the nine regulatory requirements.
Gibraltar is quickly being seen as a crypto-friendly jurisdiction for companies to develop there. GBX Grid, a subsidiary of the EU-regulated Gibraltar Stock Exchange, is aiming to be a world-leading, institutional-grade token sale platform and digital asset exchange. In July, it was reported that it had added a third project on its platform. Crowdvilla, a blockchain-based startup is hoping to democratise real estate ownership worldwide.
The stock exchange has also launched its own cryptocurrency trading platform. It currently supports Bitcoin, Ethereum, Ethereum Classic, Litecoin, and the platform’s own Rock Token, against the USD.