CoinGeek Zurich

CoinGeek Zurich: Digital asset service providers are ‘evolving for scale’

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Ella Qiang, Southeast Asia Manager of Bitcoin Association, chaired the CoinGeek Zurich conference session on Service Providers for the Digital Asset Industry, bringing together some of the leading names currently serving the sector.

Cybavo COO Jordan Forssman introduced his company as a team of security experts, drawn formerly from some of the biggest names in industry. The company helps exchanges do forensic analysis after hacks, and has built a solution to enhance security and reduce overhead. Exchanges, custodians and banks are their primary clients, with the firm adding operational efficiencies such as automated AML to streamline their processes. The whole solution offered by Cybavo has BSV support.

Forssman said their systems are already designed to handle scale, so coming increases in transaction volume are not expected to pose a big challenge for them. Cybavo doesn’t discriminate between use cases—their business is securing private keys to secure the chain. They are chain agnostic, but note that they expect the usage of BSV blockchain to continue to increase as more companies adopt the technology, and things like NFTs become more prevalent.

With DeFi and NFTs emerging, Forssman said we are not where we were five years ago with digital currency in stasis. Now, digital currency is moving everywhere, so it’s about securing the transactions themselves, as well as wallets and vaults. The emergence of these new use cases is starting to pick up, and with a focus on serving these clients and securing their data in transit, he expects this to become an increasing focus for the firm in the years to come.

Ari Last, the Vice President of Business Development at Simplex, said his firm had been among the earliest to operate in the space, empowering their partners with payment and banking solutions that allow parties to buy digital assets at scale. In the fulfillment of transactions, he said he was very excited about the direction of travel for blockchain and digital currency.

Initially, Simplex focused solely on the major tokens, such as BTC and ETH. However, today, they carry support for over 100 different tokens, including BSV, showing the extent of growth and development in the market in recent years. He projects companies will have increasing needs for custody solutions in the years to come, with trading venues and others likely to be looking to firms like Simplex for support services in greater numbers.

Noting the promise of BSV, he said Simplex were open to adding support for other digital currencies in due course, in response to emerging market demands.

Ian Lee, VP of Business Development & Founding Team Member at Merkle Science, said his firm was a next gen digital currency risk and intelligence platform, working with institutions and digital currency providers. Their solution helps detect, investigate and prevent illegal activities with digital currencies. Regulations are increasingly requiring businesses to have tools to monitor money laundering, something Merkle Science provides out the box for its clients. He considers their role to be creating infrastructure for safe and healthy growth in the industry.

In terms of capacity, Lee said he had already been planning for scale in BSV. He said what is interesting in BSV is that it’s not just transaction information being exchanged, as it expands to cover all different types of transactions. This meant there was a need to accommodate the subtle differences in requirements for clients through their solution.

On criminality in digital currencies, he noted that BTC is where most criminal activity happens, because there is sufficient liquidity, and because shifting large amounts won’t crash the market. Alternatives like BSV on the other hand are more widely used by serious enterprise users, rather than organized criminals.

The final panelist, George Zarya, founder and CEO of Bequant, said the firm started out as an exchange, before moving into prime brokerage services in 2020. Bequant services institutional clients primarily, providing a one-stop shop for institutions to access liquidity. Clients simply set up an account with Bequant which they can use to access multiple exchanges, in a convenient portal to access the liquidity they need from multiple exchanges.

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