Switzerland Takes Lead in ICO Classification for Securities Law Purposes

Crowdfund Insider reports that the Swiss regulators have published clear guidelines that create three distinct categories of Initial Coin Offerings.  In publishing the guidelines, the FINMA CEO stated:

“The application of blockchain technology has innovative potential within and far beyond the financial markets. However, blockchain-based projects conducted analogously to regulated activities cannot simply circumvent the tried and tested regulatory framework. Our balanced approach to handling ICO projects and enquiries allows legitimate innovators to navigate the regulatory landscape and so launch their projects in a way consistent with our laws protecting investors and the integrity of the financial system.”

The three categories of tokens, Payment Tokens, Utility Tokens, and Asset Tokens, hope to provide blockchain entrepreneurs a clear legal roadmap for compliance.  

Of special interest, FINMA will not treat Payment Tokens as securities and will not treat Utility Tokens as securities if "their sole purpose is to confer digital access rights to anapplication or service and if the utility token can already be used in this way at the point of issue.

Christopher Meatto