Asian banks interested in issuing security tokens on R3’s Corda now have a local custodian.

Hong Kong-based Hex Trust is partnering with the enterprise blockchain company to offer banking clients another option for issuing security tokens. The custodian began working with R3 when one of its clients issued collateral tokens for derivatives on Corda. 

“A lot of the new demand coming is for Corda-based tokens or other similar blockchain-based protocols,” Hex Trust CEO Alessio Quaglini said. The custodian joins the roughly 10 other custody firms R3 works with globally. 

Hex Trust will integrate with R3 through the Corda software development kit (SDK) for tokens that was released in July 2019. R3 clients can take advantage of Hex Trust’s custody solutions while Hex Trust clients can take advantage of the Corda blockchain. 

While neither firm could name specific projects, Hex is working with one of the “largest Asain banks” and R3 has several security token projects in the works.

Expansion map

Hex Trust’s technology was built with banks and other traditional financial institutions in mind. It offers hardware security modules from IBM, is connected with the SWIFT payment network and has integrated with the top 10 blockchain protocols by market capitalization. 

Hex Trust also has a trust company license and holds a trust or company service provider (TCSP) license under the Anti-Money Laundering and Counter-Terrorist Financing Ordinance in Hong Kong. The custodian is entering the Monetary Authority of Singapore sandbox and applying for the capital markets custody license in Singapore. It’s also been provisionally authorized by Germany’s Financial Supervisory Authority (BaFin) to provide crypto custody services and is applying for the crypto custody license in Germany as well. 

“The license helps to identify the roles of custody players and what they can do and what they cannot do for traditional institutions like banks and asset managers,” said Doris Teo, R3’s strategic account director for the Asia-Pacific region. 

Hex Trust expects to see more demand for security tokens as Hong Kong and Singapore open up sandboxes for exchanges to trade such assets and as other European Union countries develop new licensee frameworks for crypto custody. 

“I’d say the most important thing is the asset lifecycle,” Hex Trust’s Quaglini said. “Tokens designed digital on blockchain allow transactions to happen 24/7. [One can] program the lifecycle of the token directly in the smart contract, pay dividends automatically and automate voting functions.”

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