Genesis Block general counsel Cathy Yoon will be a speaker on the Blockchain and the Future of Fashion panel at What is Real? Authenticity, Transparency, and Trust in the Digital Age of Fashion, a full-day fashion law symposium. The panel discussion will examine the rise of blockchain technology in fashion and the important implications that it has on intellectual property and privacy laws.
So you’ve raised some seed and are looking to do a capital raise, but you don’t know where to start. Join us for a breakfast primer on what the process entails, what you should do to prepare, and what to expect, presented by the investment banking team of GB Capital Markets, our broker-dealer affiliate. The GBCM team has over 50 years of combined banking experience and bring their knowledge and experience to a wide variety of FinTech startups, including those in emerging technologies. Get the insight you need and ask the questions you’ve always had but didn’t know who to ask. Register now!
Genesis Block co-founder Lee Schneider will be in San Francisco judging the EOS Global Hackathon. The event is part of a series taking place in London, Hong Kong, Sydney and San Francisco to find and give a platform to the most visionary architects of decentralization and put the best applications under the spotlight.
Join us for a do’s-and-don’ts breakfast discussion with leading lawyers who have worked with a variety of FinTech clients on their capital raises. Learn best practices for what you should do before engaging a law firm, discover how to maximize the relationship, and benefit from past experiences of what not to do. Learn more
If you’re wondering where all the women in blockchain are, look no further than Shearman & Sterling’s Women Leading Series: Leaders in Blockchain panel discussion, where Genesis Block general counsel Cathy Yoon was joined by Emma Channing of Satis Group, Wendy Callaghan of AIG, Joyce Lai of Consensys, and Joshua Klayman of Klayman LLC. “It was a tremendous pleasure and honor to be on stage with a powerhouse group of women leaders in the blockchain space,” says Cathy. “The panel touched on a broad range of topics, including: the foundational aspect of blockchain technology; the current regulatory and political climate worldwide regarding blockchain and cryptocurrencies; breaking down the hype and giving a real look at the current market through cold hard numbers; and discussing recent developments in blockchain technology, including its wide-ranging impact and its evolving legal and regulatory landscape.” Read more
Genesis Block strategic advisory manager Julia Janks attended Chain Reaction, an evening of presentations, discussions and networking encompassing blockchain and entrepreneurship hosted by the Blockchain Entrepreneurs Club South Africa.
Genesis Block co-founder Lee Schneider spoke on the ICOs: Technology Meets Finance panel discussion at the International Bar Association’s Annual Conference. Lee and his fellow panelists discussed the new issues and challenges related to the buying and selling of cryptocurrency, disclosure, regulation, money laundering, payment systems and fraud prevention.
Genesis Block is pleased to announce a strategic collaboration between our FINRA-registered broker-dealer affiliate, GB Capital Markets, and Fluidity, the team behind decentralized trading network AirSwap. The two companies have joined forces to offer products and services for the creation, distribution and transfer of digital securities using blockchain technology. The collaboration will initially focus on products and services for accredited investors interested in participating in private securities transactions powered by AirSwap’s peer-to-peer protocol. Read more
The Security Token Academy declared October 2018 as the official launch of the Security Token Industry. To celebrate, they hosted the Security Token Industry Launch Event, featuring security token leaders, experts and enthusiasts, including Genesis Block co-founder Lee Schneider, who spoke on a panel discussion about regulation. Scott Rothman, president of our broker-dealer affiliate, and Gary Miller from our investment banking team also joined the festivities. Topics included: the technical foundations for the security token industry; tokenization companies and security token trading organizations; regulations; custody and transfer agents; operations, interoperability and cybersecurity; and how all of these building blocks intersect.
Genesis Block general counsel Cathy Yoon and Ed McCarthy from our investment banking team attended KoreSummit, KoreConX’s invitation-only event focused on the growing role of tokenization in the global securities marketplace.
Congratulations to our client Native on the launch of their new token and platform, which allows communities to start their own economies, including creating their own local currency, raising capital through issuing their token, and establishing governance. Genesis Block provided advisory for crafting and executing the compliant token launch and platform, and “we are very happy to see this labor of love come to fruition,” says Genesis Block co-founder Sam Proctor.
Genesis Block co-founder Lee Schneider spoke at Blockchain Live, a one-day exhibition that brought together innovators, influencers and investors in blockchain and distributed ledger technology. The event featured lively discussion on issues such as regulation, standardization, the future of a blockchain-enabled world, and how business should seek to operate within it.
Scott Rothman, president of our broker-dealer affiliate, attended the City BlockChain Summit Annual Blockchain & Crypto Investors Conference, where topics included: Blockchain-N-Social Impact Investing, Blockchain-N-Smart Contracts, Blockchain-N-Mass Media, Blockchain-N-Regulation (SEC panel), Blockchain-N-Healthcare, and Blockchain-N-Banking.
Genesis Block co-founder Lee Schneider served as one of the London judges at the EOS Global Hackathon. The event was part of a series taking place in London, Hong Kong, Sydney and San Francisco to find and give a platform to the most visionary architects of decentralization out there and put the best applications under the spotlight. “The hackathon was terrific,” says Lee. “Over 450 participants came and 90 teams presented a project to judges. I had a great time. Judging was hard, but it was so great to see so much creativity unleashed in such a short period of time. I can’t wait to do the the November EOS Hackathon in San Francisco.”
As phishing scams proliferate, it’s becoming more and more important to verify the legitimacy of those bot alerts from your bank about credit card charges or notifications from shippers that your package was delivered. That’s where Botchain comes in. International Business Times recently talked to Talla Inc., the company behind the blockchain platform that aims to certify the ownership of each bot that sends you a message, and Gary Miller from our investment banking team, who is providing financial advisory to Talla. “When interacting with artificial intelligence agents it’s important to know and trust where they are from and who is behind them,” says Gary. Read on
Blockchain and cryptocurrency are “are no passing fad,” says the CFA Institute, and Ed McCarthy from our investment banking team heartily agrees. Ed attended the CFA Society’s 2nd Annual Blockchain Conference to discuss the current blockchain and cryptocurrency landscape, then headed over to a special CryptoMondays/Israeli Tech MeetUp to hear about Israeli startups in the New York Crypto/Blockchain Industry.
Congrats to our partner company Connext on the launch of Spankchain, the first Connext Hub live on the Ethereum mainnet. Spankchain is also the first non-custodial payment channel hub that is not only deployed on mainnet but is also already being used for real payments on a production platform. More importantly, it’s an early example of how state channels can enable a highly scalable dApp that is still backed by the security of the blockchain. Read more
Genesis Block co-founder Lee Schneider attended the Global Legal Forum’s inaugural conference to discuss the opportunities and challenges presented by technology advancement in the global legal sector. The forum’s theme was Legal Technology, Blockchain and AI: The Changing Dynamics of Law, and it brought together leaders from legal technology firms, artificial intelligence, legal academia, law practice and judiciary, along with law ministries of various countries.
“The slow trickle of traditional investment into the crypto market may turn into a flood if a new platform launched by blockchain services provider AxiomLevel Technologies makes its desired impact,” reports Jimmy Aki in Bitcoin Magazine. Aki goes on to discuss the groundbreaking potential of the new platform, stating, “AxiomLevel wants to accelerate adoption [of the crypto market] by clearing up the regulatory fog for traditional investors and encouraging the space to submit to regulations more readily.” Read more
AxiomLevel Technologies is a joint venture between Genesis Block and Blockaire.
Congratulations to our technology affiliate, AxiomLevel Technologies, on their launch of an Investor Onboarding Platform, a comprehensive solution for investor registration, verification and management. AxiomLevel’s platform is one of the first to integrate regulatory compliant Know Your Customer (KYC), Anti-Money Laundering (AML) and Accredited Investor verification with a global whitelisting solution for digital wallets.
“Balancing regulatory-compliant KYC within a digital asset model is challenging, especially given the pseudo-anonymous nature of wallet addresses,” says Raleigh Harbour, co-founder of both Genesis Block and AxiomLevel. “Only by directly tying the wallet address to robust, data-driven KYC verification can you ensure that the wallet executing the transaction is actually owned by the person who initially established their identity.” Read more
Blockchain projects often find themselves with a substantial supply of BTC, ETH and BCH, but with few (if any) straightforward and cost-effective options for liquidity. If this sounds familiar, our broker-dealer affiliate can help. Learn more
So you need to raise capital. Once upon a time you might have issued stock certificates — yup, actual pieces of paper representing investor equity in a company. In 1973 came the centralized registry, which replaced paper certificates with uncertificated bookkeeping, allowing for faster, more efficient trading. And now there is the decentralized ledger, also known as blockchain.
First of all, we are not talking about ICOs (initial coin offerings). The Wild West days of cryptocurrency are on the wane as ICOs with their unsavory reputations have evolved into a more sophisticated and regulated vehicle known as the security token offering (STO). Sometimes also referred to as a digital asset offering (DAO) or tokenized asset offering (TAO), security token offerings take all that is good about blockchain and cryptocurrency, and wrap it up in a regulated package that is compliant with securities regulations and laws.
Let’s repeat that: In a security token offering, a company creates blockchain tokens to represent a security, such as equity in the company or an ownership interest in a piece of real estate; investors hold and trade these tokens on a network designed for holding and trading; and it’s compliant with securities regulations and laws.
Why is this a good thing? Read on
Congratulations to GB Capital Markets LLC, the parent company of our FINRA-registered broker-dealer affiliate, on their new strategic collaboration with MLG Blockchain. The two companies have partnered to bring together token issuers and accredited investors for investment in SEC compliant offerings. Read more
MintHealth is a healthcare company utilizing blockchain technology to combat the worldwide epidemic of chronic disease through patient empowerment, improved clinical outcomes, and lower healthcare costs.
Polymath launched the first security token platform that enables the creation, issuance and trading of financial instruments on the blockchain. Polymath’s mission is to help issue security tokens in a safe and regulated manner while reducing the challenges associated with traditional capital markets (e.g., exorbitant fees, long settlement delays, limited market hours).
The MHST token will be configured, launched and managed on the Polymath platform, which will enable MintHealth to rapidly launch MHST by encompassing all the “back office,” administrative and governance functions that otherwise would need to be established internally. Additionally, MHST will be traded 24/7 without the need for intermediaries or centralized controlling functions.
“At Genesis Block, we work with a number of promising companies looking to realize the benefits of tokenizing their capital structure,” says Genesis Block co-founder Raleigh Harbour. “MintHealth is bringing a unique blend of innovation — in both their core blockchain solution and their forward-leaning approach to raising funds — to the healthcare space. Polymath is the perfect platform for MintHealth to capitalize on the growing market for security tokens.” Learn more
When are blockchain tokens a security and when are they something other than a security? The crypto community was set abuzz when William Hinman, director of the Securities and Exchange Commision’s Division of Corporation Finance, delivered a speech on cryptocurrencies and offered additional detail on the SEC staff’s perspective on the securities law treatment of digital asset transactions.
Key takeaways include:
“Director Hinman’s remarks bring additional clarity to the securities law treatment of digital assets,” notes Genesis Block co-founder Sam Proctor. “These additional data points will be highly useful to companies looking to implement a token launch, and Genesis Block is well-equipped to help our clients navigate this highly dynamic market landscape and make the right business decisions.”
Genesis Block partner company Connext has announced an open source platform for easily setting up state channel hubs. “With Connext, Ethereum projects can enable low-cost, near-instant transactions for their users,” notes Genesis Block co-founder Sam Proctor. “We are proud to have advised and supported the Connext team as they navigated their way to this amazing result.” Learn more
Genesis Block is pleased to announce a new strategic collaboration between our broker-dealer affiliate, GB Capital Markets Inc., and BlockEx, a digital asset exchange provider for institutional-grade financial markets participants. The two companies have joined forces to provide issuers with access to the BlockExMarkets.com exchange platform in order to accept U.S. institutional customers in a compliant manner. Under the agreement, BlockEx will offer its technology to European Initial Coin Offerings (ICOs) that want to access U.S. accredited investors through GB Capital Markets, a FINRA-registered broker-dealer.
“We are delighted that the European market for ICOs and other digital asset tokens will now be open to U.S. purchasers in a way that is compliant with U.S. law,” says Adam Leonard, CEO of BlockEx. “We expect the service to be available within 90 days.”
Scott Rothman, president of GB Capital Markets, adds, “Both GB Capital Markets and BlockEx believe that the market for digital assets should be well regulated, and we’re happy to partner to bring this to the U.S.”
Genesis Block team members and other thought leaders from the worlds of finance and technology discussed The Future of Finance at Fluidity Summit 2018. As part of the event, Genesis Block co-founder Lee Schneider moderated a panel discussion on Tokenization and the Path Towards Liquidity.
“Rather than focus on whether a token is a security, we tried to talk about what the broad world would be like when you can tokenize anything,” says Lee. “People go online and see digital representations of what they want to buy every day, whether it’s a song they want to download or 500 rolls of toilet paper. That’s all blockchain tokens are: digital representations of anything from a song to rolls of toilet paper to equity in a company. And the point of having a digital representation is it makes everything more tradeable. Every digital representation on Amazon is something you can trade with or through Amazon. With blockchain, it’s conceptually the same thing, except now you can trade with anybody who’s on the same blockchain. The cool thing about blockchain is that it can be used to divorce assets from a central authority. But the even cooler thing is, it lets you know that you’re buying the only one of that digital thing.”
Genesis Block co-founders Lee Schneider and Sam Proctor, and Scott Rothman, president of our broker-dealer affiliate, attended Consensus 2018, CoinDesk’s 4th annual blockchain technology summit. “It was awesome to see all the amazing blockchain projects and solutions,” says Lee. “This year’s Consensus clearly demonstrated that blockchain has officially arrived and is now moving into the next phase of its evolution. Part of that evolution is the emergence of the security token and the SEC’s growing regulatory view. We can expect to see continued momentum behind security tokens throughout the rest of 2018 and beyond, accompanied by an expanding role for registered broker-dealers and a higher bar for compliance with securities laws and regulations.”
It was a lively debate at the CDX Academy Blockchain Brand Innovation Summit as Genesis Block general counsel and strategic advisory manager Cathy Yoon moderated a panel discussion entitled Can Blockchain Transform Healthcare?
“When people talk about blockchain, the most obvious use case is healthcare — driving business efficiencies, channeling transparency and so on,” says Cathy. “However, not everyone is convinced. From the perspective of hospitals and healthcare systems, such blockchain solutions may be too expensive and impractical to implement at this time. That doesn’t mean hospitals or healthcare do not believe in the power of blockchain. It just means blockchain developers may need to do more research into how healthcare systems really work before they can make a difference.”
Genesis Block advisory client’s Quadrant Token continues to make news. In an article in Bloomberg, analyst Richard Johnson of Greenwich Associates notes, “This is where the real potential of blockchain comes in, where assets are digitized as opposed to a purely post-trade infrastructure solution. I really see it as a logical progression. I think all companies will be listed this way in the future.” Genesis Block provided regulatory, strategic business, technological and marketing advisory for this groundbreaking token launch.
Presales of tokens, also known as Simple Agreements for Future Tokens (SAFT), are popular among startups looking to raise capital with a minimum of regulatory fuss. But Genesis Block co-founder Lee Schneider does not recommend them. The Wall Street Journal recently asked Lee about SAFTs, to which he replied, “Since the SEC seems to think that most tokens are a security, that is going to lead them to a dramatically different conclusion than what the SAFT seems to want to have.” For better ways to raise capital, contact us.
Genesis Block is pleased to announce the acquisition of GB Capital Markets Inc., a registered broker-dealer. Our new affiliate company will be led by Scott Rothman, who has been named president of the firm. For more information, please contact us.
Genesis Block co-founder Raleigh Harbour attended StartEngine ICO 2.0, a day-long summit highlighting everything ICO: structuring ICOs, marketing ICOs, ICO regulation, and the path to liquidity. Attendees included top ICO investors, advisors and founders, who discussed actionable insights into leveraging and marketing ICOs.
Genesis Block co-founder Lee Schneider and his co-host former SEC Commissioner Troy Paredes recorded a special live edition of their podcast, Appetite for Disruption, at BlockFin at LendItFintech USA 2018. Their guest for this unique event was Lou Kerner, co-founder of CryptoOracle. Lee and Troy talked to Lou about how he got into crypto, starting out as a skeptic, then becoming a total believer in the power of blockchain and its potential to become the database layer for the new Internet.
BlockFin is the world’s largest event covering blockchain in financial services, bringing together the top innovators and experts from the entire blockchain ecosystem, including technology platforms, crypto companies, startups, investors, VCs and banks.
Harvard Business School’s Blockchain, Bitcoin and Cryptocurrency Club invited Genesis Block co-founder Lee Schneider to speak at the first Business, Regulation and Technology of Blockchain Conference. Topics included:
This day-long conference was held in conjunction with the MIT-China Innovation & Entrepreneurship Fund and the Harvard Law Entrepreneurship Project’s Blockchain Initiative. Joining Lee at the microphone were industry entrepreneurs, investors and other FinTech thought leaders.
International Business Times explores the emergence of legimitacy for ICOs with the launch of Quadrant Token, and gives a nod to Genesis Block as a key advisor in the blockchain space. “[A]nother world is beginning to emerge from within the crypto world,” reports Gary Miller, “a world with real companies offering real products that people can actually understand, and they are beginning to use blockchain tokenization — yes, ICOs — to simply raise capital ... seeing a company avail itself of the innumerable benefits of blockchain technology for this purpose is actually quite groundbreaking.”
Miller goes on to say of Genesis Block, which provided advisory for the token launch: “Genesis is delivering to Quadrant a full suite of services including assistance in navigating the legal and regulatory landscape, providing communications and public relations services, and of course assisting with technology.” Read more
It was a full house in Manhattan as Quadrant Biosciences presented a deep-dive panel discussion on how blockchain technology is transforming healthcare. Quadrant Biosciences are the team behind ClearEdge, a data-driven clinical brain health assessment toolkit that brings concussion diagnosis and treatment into the modern age. “The turnout was terrific,” says Cathy Yoon, general counsel and strategic advisory manager at Genesis Block, which is providing regulatory, strategic business, technological and marketing advisory for Quadrant’s token launch. “The panel discussed everything from the company’s innovative breakthroughs and products to the blockchain technology behind their token launch.”
Genesis Block strategic advisory manager Scott Rothman (center) at CoinAgenda Caribbean with Samir Damani, CEO of MintHealth (left), and Richard Uhlig, CEO of Quadrant Biosciences (right). We are pleased to be working with such visionary companies as they leverage blockchain technology to revolutionize healthcare.
Are security tokens the future of funding for blockchain projects? MintHealth, a global, decentralized health platform, thinks so. “In 2017, ICOs took the world by storm,” writes Samir Damani, CEO and co-founder of MintHealth. “These ICOs have been predominantly tokens with utilitarian value .... However, in just one short year, we have seen the sun-setting of the ICO as we came to know them. We are now experiencing the dawn of a new era for funding Blockchain startups via a more stable, regulated vehicle known as the Security Token.”
On March 15, MintHealth announced a move toward a two-token structure: a security token that entitles holders to a royalty percentage of revenues and equity ownership in MintHealth, and a utility token that is used within the MintHealth ecosystem in lieu of traditional currency. Genesis Block is providing advisory, including guiding them through the pre-sale and public sales processes, providing insights into investors, and helping them navigate the increasingly complicated regulatory and legal crypto landscape to ensure compliance with U.S. securities and other laws.
Quadrant Biosciences kicked off the Quadrant Token Sale on March 13, embarking on what Smith + Crown, an independent blockchain research organization, calls “one of the first instances of something many anticipate will become a pronounced trend.” Quadrant Biosciences is a pioneering biotechnology company that is revolutionizing the diagnosis, management and treatment of concussions and other health conditions, including autism spectrum disorder and Parkinson’s disease. Genesis Block has been providing advisory, including regulatory and strategic business guidance, as Quadrant tokenizes its common stock in an offering that is compliant with U.S. securities and other laws.
FinCEN’s recent statement on potential registration requirements for token issuers, along with their letter to Senator Ron Wyden, raises many questions for anyone considering a token sale. In this blockchain briefing, Genesis Block co-founder Lee Schneider discussed the impact of these latest developments on blockchain projects.
The first Crypto Mondays Denver meetup was co-hosted by Genesis Block strategic advisory manager Dan Jones. No panels, no presentations, just a set of like-minded folks in the crypto space having a beer and some fun, sharing the crypto love at The Intrepid Sojourner Beer Project.
Given the economic restrictions currently enforced on Venezuela, the government’s pre-sale of the petro (PTR) cryptocurrency raises questions as to whether purchase of this supposedly oil-backed token is a breach of sanctions. It also raises the larger question of how to tokenize the whole world. International Financial Law Review (IFLR) explored these issues with Genesis Block co-founder Lee Schneider, discussing how one might tokenize, gold, oil, diamonds and even sneakers. Read more
The Information names Genesis Block co-founder Lee Schneider one of the most prominent attorneys specializing in regulations affecting cryptocurrency and blockchain investments. “It’s expertise that clients are clamoring for,” writes reporter Sarah Kuranda, “with startups, investors and big companies all looking for counsel in the new and fast-evolving sector. While regulation up until now has been limited, many people expect U.S. authorities to impose new rules on cryptocurrencies and on initial coin offerings in particular, intensifying the demand for legal help.” Read more
Above Blockchain - Crypto Conference was a day of learning and sharing the tools and ideals that are shaping the crypto landscape in 2018 and beyond. The event was hosted by Blockchain Beach and featured Genesis Block co-founder Raleigh Harbour, who moderated a panel discussion on Emerging Tech within the Blockchain Space. What are the most exciting, innovative crypto projects today? How quickly do we reach a truly decentralized ecosystem? More ...
Genesis Block co-founder Raleigh Harbour and strategic advisory manager Scott Rothman attended The Bitcoin, Ethereum & Blockchain SuperConference in Dallas, where they met with blockchain enthusiasts and supported our client MintHealth. Samir Damani, CEO and co-founder of MintHealth, presented on how blockchain and token incentives will revolutionize healthcare.
Blockchain technologies and the decentralization it brings could lead to the most significant technological and social advancements since the rise of the Internet. To stay abreast of the latest developments in blockchain and the Ethereum platform, Genesis Block strategic advisory manager Dan Jones attended ETHDenver, where he networked with blockchain developers, thought leaders, advisors and investors. Read Dan’s report
Forbes magazine talks with Genesis Block co-founder Lee Schneider about the Howey Test and blockchain tokens: In July, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission issued a “report warning startups that their tokens could constitute securities and [be] subject to federal securities laws .... But the SEC report, much of it based on an obscure 1946 Supreme Court test called the Howey test involving Florida citrus grove investments, has only raised more questions than it has answered and has token lawyers reaching for their legal tomes to see exactly how that historic case relates to modern day digital assets.” Read what Lee and other FinTech legal experts have to say on this
Genesis Block co-founder Lee Schneider was the keynote speaker and panelist at Blockchaingers: Legal Deep Dive, a conference bringing together lawyers, regulators, developers, entrepreneurs, governments, corporations and scholars to explore the legal challenges posed by blockchain implementations and the legal aspects concerning blockchain in general, smart contracts and ICOs.
Video blog with Genesis Block co-founder Lee Schneider and Numerix chief marketing officer James Jockle.
Genesis Block co-founder Lee Schneider and Andreas Weiler of Smith + Crown led Token Sales for Entrepreneurs, a workshop for entrepreneurs seeking to leverage the power of tokenization. Topics ranged from token economic design, legal compliance, regulatory implications of token sales, taxes — everything an entrepreneur who is looking to raise money through a token sale needs to know.
Genesis Block co-founder Lee Schneider was a speaker at Crypto Valley Forum Meetup, a panel discussion examining the legalities of tokenization in Switzerland and the U.S.
Genesis Block co-founder Lee Schneider discussed token sale market performance as part of an expert panel discussion at Token Summit 2017, the first event that explores the economics, regulation and best practices around blockchain-based tokens, protocols and crypto-assets.
Genesis Block co-founder Raleigh Harbour was a featured speaker at the first Real World Blockchain Meetup: Digital Advertising!!