DBS Vickers gets nod to provide trading services for digital payment tokens

DBS says its brokerage arm is working through necessary follow-ups with a view to meeting MAS requirements for a licence.
DBS says its brokerage arm is working through necessary follow-ups with a view to meeting MAS requirements for a licence.PHOTO: ST FILE

SINGAPORE (THE BUSINESS TIMES) - The brokerage arm of DBS, DBS Vickers, has received in-principle approval from the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) to provide trading services for digital payment tokens, the bank said in a statement on Thursday (Aug 12).

DBS Digital Exchange (DDEx) - a members-only platform for institutional and accredited investors - will also operate round the clock from Monday, "to cater to increasing trading volume amidst growing client demand", DBS said.

The move will enhance members' ability to seize opportunities and manage risks arising from changes in cryptocurrency spot prices, the bank added.

The exchange, which recorded close to $180 million in total trading value in the second quarter of this year, had first operated only during Asian trading hours.

The bank noted that Vickers is working through the necessary follow-ups with a view to meeting MAS' requirements for a licence.

Once licensed by the MAS, Vickers will be able to directly support asset managers and companies to trade in digital payment tokens through the DDEx, of which Vickers is a member.

DBS group head of capital markets Eng-Kwok Seat Moey noted that Vickers' in-principle approval and DDEx's new operational hours could help accelerate the exchange's growth.

"We are confident of doubling our investor base by the end of the year. This bodes well for our ability to provide integrated solutions across the digital asset value chain notably in the form of security token offerings (STOs), leveraging DBS' expertise in deal origination to tokenisation, listing, distribution, trading and custody," she said.

DBS has been building up its pipeline of potential STOs, with DDEx listing its inaugural STO in June in the form of a $15 million digital bond.

"This will contribute to Singapore's ambitions to be a digital asset hub in Asia," Ms Eng-Kwok added.

As at the end of June, around 400 investors have joined DDEx to trade. DBS also has more than $130 million in digital assets in its custodial services, the bank said.