Cryptocurrencies will inevitably be a regulated part of the world’s existing financial system, according to Christopher Flinos, the co-founder of Hayvn, a new digital currency trading and custody platform.
In an interview with Arabian Business, Flinos said that he believes regulations are increasingly inevitable because of high-profile losses in initial coin offerings (ICOs).
“You can’t have an asset class of about $120 billion and just have it continually sitting outside the existing financial system,” he said. “Nothing stimulates regulation more than seeing individuals lose a lot of money. We see a lot of regulations being a backlash against the ICO-side of the business.
“We generally thin digital economies will play a greater role in the real economy, and as a result of that, will play a greater role in capital markets,” he added.
Hayvn, he explained, is designed “to look and act” like an investment banking platform.
“It’s designed for institutional investors, the JPMorgans and Merrills of the world,” he said. “The idea is to buy and store digital currency with us, safely and legally, in a regulated environment. Over the next 12 to 24 months, we believe more of these guys [institutional investors] will look more at digital currency and put a small portion of their overall allocation into digital currency. We want Hayvn to be the number one destination for this money.”
Flinos added that he believes the firm represents the “middle ground” between the “anarchic, change-the-system” world of cryptocurrencies and traditional investors who until now have been wary of putting their money into digital currencies.
“Institutional money is contrary to the original ambitions of cryptocurrencies,” he said. “What we’re trying to do is against it. There is a middle ground between two extremist positions.”
Hayvn co-founder and CEO Ahmed Ismail said that the company is currently “in discussions” with Abu Dhabi Global Markets to be licensed.
“Regulation is good. It protects the consumer and the user from theft and from us lying about what we have,” he said. “Our audits are seen by the regulator.”For all the latest banking and finance news from the UAE and Gulf countries, follow us on Twitter and Linkedin, like us on Facebook and subscribe to our YouTube page, which is updated daily.
Subscribe to Arabian Business' newsletter to receive the latest breaking news and business stories in Dubai,the UAE and the GCC straight to your inbox.