Hong Kong-based blockchain service provider Diginex plans to list on Nasdaq by selling itself to a special purpose company that is already traded on the US exchange, according to the firm’s top executive.
Diginex Chief Executive Officer Richard Byworth says the company signed an agreement with 8i Enterprises Acquisition, a Nasdaq-listed special purpose acquisition company, on July 10.
Under the deal, 8i Enterprises will acquire Diginex at an initial enterprise value of approximately US$276 million.
“The transaction is scheduled to be completed in the fourth quarter,” Mr. Byworth says in an interview with Asia Asset Management, adding that Diginex will become the “first fully diversified blockchain play listed on Nasdaq”.
He says the listing will allow “a level of transparency that brings an additional level of comfort to the institutions that we’re working with to provide trusted technology, innovative solutions, as well as the entire infrastructure for the trading, exchange and storage of digital assets”.
According to Mr. Byworth, there is increasing demand for digital asset management services from institutional investors that cannot tap into some $200 billion of digital assets because they don’t have the internal expertise to deal with security issues, and also due to a lack of regulation.
Diginex, which was incorporated in 2017, primarily provides digital services to institutional investors and governments.
This June, the company was licensed to provide asset management services and securities advisory services by Hong Kong’s Securities & Futures Commission.
Mr. Byworth says Diginex plans to launch a fund of hedge funds that invests solely in alpha focused strategies “in a few months”.
The company also plans to introduce custody solutions, as well as participate in the sandbox custodian business of the UK’s Financial Conduct Authority.