Swiss Stock Exchange Planning a Digital Asset Ecosystem

SIX Group, the owner and operator of Switzerland's stock exchange announced today that it is planning to build a parallel, fully-regulated "digital asset ecosystem" which will offer trading, settlement and custodial services. The new entity will be known as the Swiss Digital Exchange (SDX) and will enable SIX to offer a range of services, while maintaining the regulated status held today.

The DLT-based infrastructure will be rolled out in consequentially as befitting the Swiss model of operations with available services planned for use by mid-2019.

According to Thomas Zeeb, Head, Securities & Exchanges, SIX, the need to create trust and security in digital markets makes the move for SIX a good one: "Do you adopt a model with many sub-custodians, including inefficient interfaces and with inherent risks, or do you go with a recognised and regulated infrastructure provider who provides all steps of the chain in an integrated and secure model? We believe that the latter has significant value."

The SDX would become the first market infrastructure in the world to offer a fully integrated end to end trading, settlement and custody service for digital assets with the capability to enable the tokenisation of existing securities and non-bankable assets.

While this first step into the world of digital assets may come a surprise to some, given the reluctance of Swiss banks to open accounts for crypto companies, SIX CEO Jos Dijsselhof sees things optimistically: “This is the beginning of a new era for capital markets infrastructures. For us it is abundantly clear that much of what is going on in the digital space is here to stay and will define the future of our industry. The financial industry now needs to bridge the gap between traditional financial services and digital communities. This is the role that we at SIX can play."


Ian Simpson