Banking giants in South Korea embrace the future of digital assets

South korean banks


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  • South Korean lenders join NongHyup’s bank consortium for security token offerings (STOs).
  • STOs, unique to South Korea, leverage blockchain and DLT to represent assets like stocks, bonds, real estate, and art ownership.
  • Hana Bank, Shinhan Bank, Woori Bank, and fintech firms join the consortium, bringing the member count to 18.

In a significant development, several influential lenders in South Korea have now become part of a bank consortium. This consortium, led by Seoul’s NongHyup, centers around the exciting new world of security token offerings (STOs). These STOs, unique to South Korea, are essentially traditional investments with a twist. They exist on blockchain or DLT, representing assets like stocks, bonds, or even art and real estate ownership.

On Thursday, the Korea Herald revealed a notable update. Hana Bank, Shinhan Bank, and Woori Bank have joined NongHyup’s innovative consortium. Fintech firms such as Funble, Trackchain, and Artipio have also joined in, pushing the consortium’s member count to 18. 

Earlier this year, South Korea responded to the skyrocketing demand for digital assets by legalizing security token offerings. Consequently, the Financial Services Commission of South Korea rolled out guidelines for these tokens in February. Under these guidelines, STOs now fall within the country’s capital markets law.

South Korea saw STOs first emerge around 2019. Although it’s still an evolving market, analysts predict a significant potential for growth. By 2024, the Korea Herald estimates it could reach 34 trillion won ($26.6 billion).

To create this consortium, NongHyup has allied with Suhyup, Jeonbuk, and six security token-related firms, including Seoul Auction Blue, Galaxy Money Tree, and JB Investment. According to reports, consortium members will collectively explore ways to penetrate the STO market. However, they aim to achieve this while fully complying with regulatory guidelines.

Besides, they intend to co-develop platforms to issue token securities. Ultimately, their goal is to construct a tokenized securities ecosystem. Here, companies can issue corporate bonds as security tokens that can be traded freely.

The tokenization trend is gaining traction across multiple blockchain ecosystems. In 2023, prominent institutions such as Goldman Sachs and Siemens began embracing tokenized assets. Therefore, the move by South Korean banks further reinforces the growing global interest in this field.

The information provided is not trading advice. Cryptopolitan.com holds no liability for any investments made based on the information provided on this page. We strongly recommend independent research and/or consultation with a qualified professional before making any investment decision.

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Mutuma Maxwell

Maxwell especially enjoys penning pieces about blockchain and cryptocurrency. He started his venture into blogging in 2020, later focusing on the world of cryptocurrencies. His life's work is to introduce the concept of decentralization to people worldwide.

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