Deutsche Börse and Commerzbank are entering a strategic partnership with fintech 360X to develop new blockchain-based digital marketplaces and ecosystems for existing real asset classes such as art and real estate. In order to achieve this, the partners combine their strengths: Deutsche Börse as experienced market infrastructure operator, Commerzbank as partner for the digital banking world of tomorrow, and 360X’s experienced team of fintech founders will jointly work on digital marketplaces of the future to generate new revenue potential. The first reference transaction (minimum viable product) for two asset classes is planned for this year.
The new trading platform facilitates investment in asset classes that have so far been illiquid, explains Carlo Kölzer, founder and CEO of 360X. “Our mantra is ‘Making Things Investable – Bridging the Gap between Asset Classes and Capital Markets’. We create transparent and liquid trading venues for assets that have not yet existed in digital markets. We are therefore starting with trading venues for art and real estate. 360X is set up as a highly scalable model so further asset classes will follow.” Carlo Kölzer and his team founded 360T, the world’s leading electronic foreign exchange trading platform, in Frankfurt in 2000.
The assets will be made investable and tradable via tokenisation and fractionalisation. Tokenised real assets are mapped on blockchain to facilitate access for investors and allow the fractionalisation of the underlying asset. The three partners maintain the highest standards of legal certainty, data protection, and compliance with regulatory frameworks as well as for the establishment of an orderly secondary market.
Threefold expertise for new digital markets
Carlo Kölzer: “360X aims at a megatrend. Digital assets are an exponential growth market. We create new ecosystems and offer investors innovative investment opportunities in assets which they did not have access to before. This creates added value for the financial sector.”
Theodor Weimer, CEO of Deutsche Börse AG: “I am convinced that Deutsche Börse has to venture into new asset classes. In the future, we will see a broad tokenisation and digitisation of assets that are not tradable today. 360X is the new innovative platform for serial marketplace creation that we are building with our partners.”
Manfred Knof, CEO of Commerzbank AG: “We take real assets to digital marketplaces. With our and Deutsche Börse’s investment in 360X we see the potential to actively shape one of these digital asset ecosystems of the future. Commerzbank has many years of experience with DLT technology and is a sought-after expert in the emerging asset universe. With pilot transactions in the areas of payments, securities and trade finance, as well as strategic partnerships with technology and internet companies, and cooperation with DLT networks, Commerzbank is a reliable partner in tomorrow’s digital banking.”
Deutsche Börse and Commerzbank have longstanding experience with DLT technology, with joint pilot transactions having been executed via DLT for the first time in 2019.
Commerzbank is the leading bank for the German Mittelstand and a strong partner for around 30,000 corporate client groups and around 11 million private and small-business customers in Germany. The Bank’s two Business Segments – Private and Small-Business Customers and Corporate Clients – offer a comprehensive portfolio of financial services. Commerzbank transacts approximately 30 per cent of Germany’s foreign trade and is present internationally in almost 40 countries in the corporate clients’ business. The Bank focusses on the German Mittelstand, large corporates, and institutional clients. As part of its international business, Commerzbank supports clients with German connectivity and companies operating in selected future-oriented industries. Following the integration of comdirect, private and small-business customers benefit from the services offered by one of Germany’s most advanced direct banks combined with personal advisory support on site. Its Polish subsidiary mBank S.A. is an innovative digital bank that serves approximately 5.7 million private and corporate customers, predominantly in Poland, but also in the Czech Republic and Slovakia. In 2020, Commerzbank generated gross revenues of some €8.2 billion with almost 48,000 employees.
About Deutsche Börse Group
As an international exchange organisation and innovative market infrastructure provider, Deutsche Börse Group ensures markets characterised by integrity, transparency, and stability. With its wide range of products, services, and technologies, the Group organises safe and efficient markets for sustainable economies. Its business areas extend along the entire value chain in exchange trading, including the admission, trading and clearing, and custody of securities and other financial instruments, the dissemination of market data, as well as the management of collateral and liquidity. As a technology company, the Group develops state-of-the-art IT solutions and offers IT systems all over the world. With more than 9,000 employees, the Group has its headquarters in the financial centre of Frankfurt/Rhine-Main, as well as a strong global presence in locations such as Luxembourg, Prague, London, New York, Chicago, Hong Kong, Singapore, Beijing, Tokyo and Sydney.