Viking Fund Management Llc increased Duke Energy Corp (DUK) stake by 10.81% reported in 2017Q4 SEC filing. Viking Fund Management Llc acquired 4,000 shares as Duke Energy Corp (DUK)’s stock declined 8.40%. The Viking Fund Management Llc holds 41,000 shares with $3.45 million value, …
April 20, 2018 – By Peter Erickson
Among 14 analysts covering IberiaBank (NASDAQ:IBKC), 9 have Buy rating, 0 Sell and 5 Hold. Therefore 64% are positive. IberiaBank had 51 analyst reports since August 25, 2015 according to SRatingsIntel. On Tuesday, August 15 the stock rating was upgraded by PiperJaffray to “Overweight”. The rating was maintained by Jefferies with “Buy” on Monday, January 8. Jefferies maintained the shares of IBKC in report on Monday, October 23 with “Buy” rating. The stock of IBERIABANK Corporation (NASDAQ:IBKC) earned “Buy” rating by Stephens on Monday, July 31. As per Thursday, October 1, the company rating was upgraded by Sandler O’Neill. The stock of IBERIABANK Corporation (NASDAQ:IBKC) has “Hold” rating given on Friday, July 21 by Piper Jaffray. The firm earned “Overweight” rating on Thursday, October 5 by PiperJaffray. The rating was downgraded by Raymond James to “Hold” on Wednesday, December 20. The stock of IBERIABANK Corporation (NASDAQ:IBKC) has “Mkt Perform” rating given on Thursday, February 2 by JMP Securities. As per Monday, January 29, the company rating was maintained by Piper Jaffray. See IBERIABANK Corporation (NASDAQ:IBKC) latest ratings:
20/12/2017 Broker: SunTrust Rating: Buy New Target: $86.0 Maintain
20/12/2017 Broker: Raymond James Rating: Hold Downgrade
Viking Fund Management Llc increased Duke Energy Corp (DUK) stake by 10.81% reported in 2017Q4 SEC filing. Viking Fund Management Llc acquired 4,000 shares as Duke Energy Corp (DUK)’s stock declined 8.40%. The Viking Fund Management Llc holds 41,000 shares with $3.45 million value, up from 37,000 last quarter. Duke Energy Corp now has $56.68 billion valuation. The stock increased 0.31% or $0.24 during the last trading session, reaching $78.52. About 2.42 million shares traded. Duke Energy Corporation (NYSE:DUK) has declined 6.87% since April 20, 2017 and is downtrending. It has underperformed by 18.42% the S&P500.
Viking Fund Management Llc decreased Propetro Holding stake by 20,000 shares to 1.00 million valued at $20.16 million in 2017Q4. It also reduced Cheniere Energy (NYSEMKT:LNG) stake by 20,000 shares and now owns 50,000 shares. Rsp Permian Inc (NYSE:RSPP) was reduced too.
Investors sentiment increased to 1.13 in Q4 2017. Its up 0.06, from 1.07 in 2017Q3. It improved, as 46 investors sold DUK shares while 352 reduced holdings. 100 funds opened positions while 348 raised stakes. 389.71 million shares or 0.49% less from 391.64 million shares in 2017Q3 were reported. Rodgers Brothers reported 4,707 shares. Bruce & Inc stated it has 347,788 shares. First Savings Bank owns 8,547 shares or 0.12% of their US portfolio. Eagle Ridge Invest Management owns 2,718 shares. Moreover, Assetmark has 0% invested in Duke Energy Corporation (NYSE:DUK). Oregon Pub Employees Retirement Fund has invested 0.1% in Duke Energy Corporation (NYSE:DUK). Moreover, Carret Asset Mngmt Ltd Llc has 0.15% invested in Duke Energy Corporation (NYSE:DUK) for 11,150 shares. John G Ullman Associate Inc has 0.75% invested in Duke Energy Corporation (NYSE:DUK) for 44,806 shares. Synovus Fincl Corporation holds 0.25% or 167,402 shares. Td Asset Mngmt has invested 0.2% of its portfolio in Duke Energy Corporation (NYSE:DUK). Old Second Bankshares Of Aurora holds 0.1% or 3,010 shares in its portfolio. First Finance Corporation In holds 12,288 shares. Timber Hill Lc has invested 0.21% of its portfolio in Duke Energy Corporation (NYSE:DUK). Tower Bridge Advisors accumulated 5,774 shares or 0.05% of the stock. Philadelphia Trust Company stated it has 0.6% in Duke Energy Corporation (NYSE:DUK).
Among 20 analysts covering Duke Energy (NYSE:DUK), 5 have Buy rating, 4 Sell and 11 Hold. Therefore 25% are positive. Duke Energy had 87 analyst reports since August 7, 2015 according to SRatingsIntel. Credit Suisse upgraded Duke Energy Corporation (NYSE:DUK) on Tuesday, January 23 to “Outperform” rating. Mizuho maintained it with “Neutral” rating and $72 target in Monday, February 22 report. The rating was maintained by RBC Capital Markets with “Buy” on Wednesday, March 14. The company was initiated on Friday, September 18 by Citigroup. Guggenheim maintained Duke Energy Corporation (NYSE:DUK) on Tuesday, January 2 with “Buy” rating. As per Friday, February 19, the company rating was downgraded by JP Morgan. The rating was maintained by Deutsche Bank on Friday, November 6 with “Hold”. SunTrust maintained it with “Neutral” rating and $80 target in Monday, March 7 report. The rating was maintained by SunTrust on Tuesday, December 26 with “Hold”. The stock of Duke Energy Corporation (NYSE:DUK) has “Underperform” rating given on Tuesday, November 22 by Bank of America.
Investors sentiment decreased to 1.16 in Q4 2017. Its down 0.22, from 1.38 in 2017Q3. It dropped, as 29 investors sold IBERIABANK Corporation shares while 65 reduced holdings. 38 funds opened positions while 71 raised stakes. 45.24 million shares or 7.84% more from 41.95 million shares in 2017Q3 were reported. Guggenheim Capital Limited Company accumulated 106,104 shares. Tokio Marine Asset Limited reported 0.21% stake. Hodges Cap Management Inc holds 0.02% of its portfolio in IBERIABANK Corporation (NASDAQ:IBKC) for 3,000 shares. Moreover, Envestnet Asset Mgmt has 0% invested in IBERIABANK Corporation (NASDAQ:IBKC) for 979 shares. Seaward Mgmt Limited Partnership has invested 0.79% in IBERIABANK Corporation (NASDAQ:IBKC). Fmr Ltd Liability Corp holds 0.01% or 893,422 shares in its portfolio. Barclays Public Ltd Co stated it has 17,258 shares or 0% of all its holdings. Glenmede Tru Na invested in 0% or 2,180 shares. Boston Lc accumulated 42,931 shares or 0.07% of the stock. Ameriprise owns 0.01% invested in IBERIABANK Corporation (NASDAQ:IBKC) for 160,523 shares. Ubs Oconnor Limited Liability Corp accumulated 100,865 shares. Tower Research Ltd Llc (Trc) owns 12 shares. Glg Ptnrs L P reported 0.56% of its portfolio in IBERIABANK Corporation (NASDAQ:IBKC). Public Employees Retirement Systems Of Ohio accumulated 31,176 shares. Highbridge Mgmt Lc has invested 0.14% of its portfolio in IBERIABANK Corporation (NASDAQ:IBKC).
IBERIABANK Corporation operates as the bank holding firm for IBERIABANK that provides commercial and retail banking services and products in the United States. The company has market cap of $4.23 billion. It offers various commercial, consumer, mortgage, and private banking services and products; cash management services; deposit and annuity products; and brokerage services, as well as sells variable annuities. It has a 30.26 P/E ratio. The firm also provides various title insurance and loan closing services for residential and commercial customers; one-to-four family residential mortgage loans; equity research, institutional sales and trading, and corporate finance services; and wealth management and trust advisory services to high net worth individuals, pension funds, firms, and trusts, as well as invests in a commercial rental property and purchased tax credits.
The stock increased 1.49% or $1.15 during the last trading session, reaching $78.4. About 367,962 shares traded or 2.97% up from the average. IBERIABANK Corporation (NASDAQ:IBKC) has risen 2.51% since April 20, 2017 and is uptrending. It has underperformed by 9.04% the S&P500.
Receive News & Ratings Via Email – Enter your email address below to receive a concise daily summary of the latest news and analysts’ ratings with our FREE daily email newsletter.
Two Sigma Investments LP acquired a new position in PJT Partners (NYSE:PJT) during the fourth quarter, according to its most recent filing with the SEC. The firm acquired 29,834 shares of the financial services provider’s stock, valued at approximately $1,360,000. Two Sigma Investments LP owned …
Two Sigma Investments LP acquired a new position in PJT Partners (NYSE:PJT) during the fourth quarter, according to its most recent filing with the SEC. The firm acquired 29,834 shares of the financial services provider’s stock, valued at approximately $1,360,000. Two Sigma Investments LP owned about 0.16% of PJT Partners as of its most recent filing with the SEC.
Several other hedge funds have also modified their holdings of PJT. Maltese Capital Management LLC grew its position in shares of PJT Partners by 395.4% in the 3rd quarter. Maltese Capital Management LLC now owns 204,292 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $7,826,000 after buying an additional 163,056 shares during the last quarter. Eagle Asset Management Inc. purchased a new position in shares of PJT Partners in the 4th quarter valued at approximately $5,604,000. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP lifted its stake in shares of PJT Partners by 68.9% in the 3rd quarter. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP now owns 208,047 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $7,970,000 after purchasing an additional 84,881 shares during the period. University of Notre Dame DU Lac lifted its stake in shares of PJT Partners by 46.9% in the 4th quarter. University of Notre Dame DU Lac now owns 181,949 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $8,297,000 after purchasing an additional 58,091 shares during the period. Finally, Prudential Financial Inc. purchased a new position in shares of PJT Partners in the 3rd quarter valued at approximately $2,123,000. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 59.03% of the company’s stock.
A number of research firms have recently commented on PJT. Sandler O’Neill cut PJT Partners from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating and set a $57.00 target price for the company. in a research note on Thursday, April 12th. They noted that the move was a valuation call. Zacks Investment Research cut PJT Partners from a “strong-buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Wednesday, April 11th. Bank of America raised their target price on PJT Partners from $55.00 to $60.00 and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research note on Thursday, April 12th. Finally, Buckingham Research began coverage on PJT Partners in a research note on Wednesday, January 3rd. They issued a “neutral” rating and a $51.00 target price for the company. One investment analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, two have issued a hold rating, two have given a buy rating and one has given a strong buy rating to the stock. The company has a consensus rating of “Buy” and a consensus price target of $54.80.
In other PJT Partners news, General Counsel James W. Cuminale sold 2,816 shares of PJT Partners stock in a transaction on Tuesday, March 6th. The stock was sold at an average price of $48.05, for a total transaction of $135,308.80. Following the completion of the transaction, the general counsel now owns 49,502 shares in the company, valued at $2,378,571.10. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through this link. 8.01% of the stock is currently owned by insiders.
PJT opened at $54.40 on Friday. The company has a market capitalization of $1,022.20, a PE ratio of 35.32 and a beta of 0.36. PJT Partners has a 52 week low of $34.11 and a 52 week high of $55.13.
PJT Partners (NYSE:PJT) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Wednesday, February 7th. The financial services provider reported $0.79 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.67 by $0.12. The business had revenue of $190.55 million during the quarter. PJT Partners had a positive return on equity of 319.40% and a negative net margin of 6.52%. analysts expect that PJT Partners will post 2.58 earnings per share for the current year.
The business also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Wednesday, March 21st. Shareholders of record on Wednesday, March 7th were paid a dividend of $0.05 per share. This represents a $0.20 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 0.37%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Tuesday, March 6th. PJT Partners’s payout ratio is 12.99%.
COPYRIGHT VIOLATION WARNING: This piece was published by StockNewsTimes and is owned by of StockNewsTimes. If you are viewing this piece on another website, it was illegally copied and reposted in violation of United States and international copyright & trademark laws. The original version of this piece can be accessed at https://stocknewstimes.com/2018/04/20/two-sigma-investments-lp-takes-position-in-pjt-partners-pjt.html.
PJT Partners Profile
PJT Partners Inc provides various strategic advisory, restructuring and special situations, and private fund advisory and placement services to corporations, financial sponsors, institutional investors, and governments worldwide. It offers a range of financial advisory and transaction execution capability, including mergers and acquisitions, joint ventures, minority investments, asset swaps, divestitures, takeover defenses, corporate finance advisory, private placements, and distressed sales.
Receive News & Ratings for PJT Partners Daily – Enter your email address below to receive a concise daily summary of the latest news and analysts’ ratings for PJT Partners and related companies with MarketBeat.com’s FREE daily email newsletter.
Two Sigma Investments LP lessened its position in shares of National General Holdings (NASDAQ:NGHC) by 55.1% during the fourth quarter, according to the company in its most recent 13F filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission. The fund owned 73,096 shares of the insurance provider’s …
Two Sigma Investments LP lessened its position in shares of National General Holdings (NASDAQ:NGHC) by 55.1% during the fourth quarter, according to the company in its most recent 13F filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission. The fund owned 73,096 shares of the insurance provider’s stock after selling 89,623 shares during the period. Two Sigma Investments LP owned about 0.07% of National General worth $1,436,000 as of its most recent SEC filing.
A number of other large investors have also recently added to or reduced their stakes in NGHC. Comerica Bank lifted its holdings in shares of National General by 49.2% in the 3rd quarter. Comerica Bank now owns 15,257 shares of the insurance provider’s stock worth $310,000 after purchasing an additional 5,031 shares during the last quarter. Russell Investments Group Ltd. lifted its holdings in shares of National General by 23.4% in the 3rd quarter. Russell Investments Group Ltd. now owns 47,509 shares of the insurance provider’s stock worth $908,000 after purchasing an additional 9,006 shares during the last quarter. SG Americas Securities LLC acquired a new stake in National General in the 3rd quarter valued at approximately $134,000. American International Group Inc. increased its position in National General by 8.1% in the 3rd quarter. American International Group Inc. now owns 32,926 shares of the insurance provider’s stock valued at $629,000 after acquiring an additional 2,462 shares during the period. Finally, Legal & General Group Plc increased its position in National General by 34.6% in the 3rd quarter. Legal & General Group Plc now owns 22,746 shares of the insurance provider’s stock valued at $433,000 after acquiring an additional 5,849 shares during the period. 46.87% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.
In related news, COO Peter A. Rendall sold 6,637 shares of National General stock in a transaction on Thursday, March 29th. The stock was sold at an average price of $24.31, for a total transaction of $161,345.47. Following the completion of the sale, the chief operating officer now owns 17 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $413.27. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is available through the SEC website. Also, EVP Thomas Newgarden sold 5,084 shares of National General stock in a transaction on Monday, March 5th. The shares were sold at an average price of $24.26, for a total value of $123,337.84. Following the sale, the executive vice president now directly owns 4,766 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $115,623.16. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Company insiders own 3.40% of the company’s stock.
Several analysts recently commented on NGHC shares. Zacks Investment Research upgraded National General from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating and set a $22.00 target price on the stock in a research report on Saturday, January 6th. Mizuho lifted their price target on National General from $29.00 to $31.00 and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research report on Wednesday, March 21st. B. Riley lifted their price target on National General from $29.00 to $31.00 and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research report on Wednesday, March 21st. BidaskClub upgraded National General from a “strong sell” rating to a “sell” rating in a research report on Thursday, March 22nd. Finally, ValuEngine cut National General from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Monday, April 2nd. One analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, three have given a hold rating and four have assigned a buy rating to the company’s stock. National General presently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $27.50.
Shares of NASDAQ NGHC opened at $25.51 on Friday. The firm has a market capitalization of $2,645.47, a P/E ratio of 22.74 and a beta of 0.93. National General Holdings has a 52-week low of $16.21 and a 52-week high of $25.75.
National General (NASDAQ:NGHC) last issued its earnings results on Monday, February 26th. The insurance provider reported $0.28 EPS for the quarter, topping the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.21 by $0.07. The business had revenue of $1.04 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $1.01 billion. National General had a return on equity of 7.10% and a net margin of 1.67%. National General’s revenue was up 5.1% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter last year, the firm posted $0.30 earnings per share. analysts anticipate that National General Holdings will post 2.23 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.
The firm also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Monday, April 16th. Stockholders of record on Monday, April 2nd were given a $0.04 dividend. The ex-dividend date was Thursday, March 29th. This represents a $0.16 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 0.63%. National General’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 14.68%.
COPYRIGHT VIOLATION WARNING: “Two Sigma Investments LP Has $1.44 Million Holdings in National General Holdings (NGHC)” was published by Week Herald and is the sole property of of Week Herald. If you are accessing this news story on another site, it was copied illegally and republished in violation of United States & international copyright law. The original version of this news story can be viewed at https://weekherald.com/2018/04/20/two-sigma-investments-lp-has-1-44-million-stake-in-national-general-holdings-corp-nghc.html.
About National General
National General Holdings Corp., a specialty personal lines insurance holding company, provides various insurance products and services in the United States. The company operates in two segments, Property and Casualty, and Accident and Health. The Property and Casualty segment offers standard, preferred, and nonstandard automobile insurance products; and recreational vehicle (RV) insurance products that carry RV-specific endorsements comprising automatic personal effects coverage, optional replacement cost coverage, RV storage coverage, and full-time liability coverage.
Receive News & Ratings for National General Daily – Enter your email address below to receive a concise daily summary of the latest news and analysts’ ratings for National General and related companies with MarketBeat.com’s FREE daily email newsletter.
Silicon Valley venture capital firm 500 Startups has also entered the space with its 22X Fund, which is jointly operated with Securitize Capital LLC. This vehicle permits accredited investors who purchase 22X tokens to own up to 10 per cent equity in the 22nd batch of its portfolio companies. Companies …
Initial coin offers (ICOs) and the emergence of tokenised funds — represented by the issue of equity tokens — are set to reshape the dynamics of how private equity (PE) and venture capital (VC) fund managers raise capital, bringing greater transparency and democratisation to the fund management space.
Equity tokens, also known as security tokens, are tokenised securities which derive their value from an external, tradeable asset and are subject to securities regulations. In Singapore’s case — given its status as the largest centre for ICOs in Asia as at 2017— such securities products fall under the remit of the Securities & Futures Act (SFA).
The Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) currently notes that digital tokens can function in the role of a utility token that offers benefits in the form of goods or services, or an equity token that operates as an offer of shares, units in a collective investment scheme or a debenture; current regulations require issuers of security tokens to lodge a prospectus with the MAS, with online exchanges that facilitate their trading requiring approval.
The use of equity tokens serves to disintermediate the use of private placement agents, who often serve as intermediaries between the various limited partners (LPs) — foundations, endowments, family offices, trusts, corporates, fund of Funds (FoFs), insurance firms, state funds, pension funds and other players — and the fund managers that look to engage them.
An additional layer of protection that the use of equity tokens in an ICOs could offer is the use of smart contracts, as exemplified by the Ethereum blockchain. Fundamentally, it offers a decentralised and more democratic tool for fund managers to raise capital.
Silicon Valley venture capital firm 500 Startups has also entered the space with its 22X Fund, which is jointly operated with Securitize Capital LLC. This vehicle permits accredited investors who purchase 22X tokens to own up to 10 per cent equity in the 22nd batch of its portfolio companies.
Companies that form this particular fund have collectively raised over $20 million, with financial backers including institutional investors such as 500 Startups, Accenture and Deutsche Bank. The 22X Fund aims to raise up to $35 million which will be deployed immediately and invested on a pro-rata basis in the equity of participating early-stage ventures.
Investors in this fund can purchase 22X tokens with Bitcoin, Ethereum, USD or other currencies, with the tokens enabling ownership of up to 10 per cent in each participating firm. Proceeds from the fund are distributed pro rata to participating companies capped at $1 million, with token holders able to trade tokens after a year and receive proceeds from liquidity events.
The BB Fund — which has not issued tokens to date — is aiming to raise a corpus of $200 million, with its first close at $50 million. It plans to concentrate on enterprises operating in the blockchain and financial technology sector. It will target investments at the pre-ICO (pre-sale), ICO, as well as pre-seed, seed and Series A funding rounds, with an investment cycle of three years.
The BB Fund will be issuing the BB Token and has capped its supply at 1 million tokens priced at $200 and fixed in Ethereum (ETH), with investors able to trade tokens on the funds’ trading desk during the annual redemption period. According to the funds’ website, the BB Token represents the share of investor’s ownership in the BB Fund and is “collateralised by a portfolio of underlying tokens”.
In an email exchange with this portal, Igor Pesin, the CFO of BB Fund and LifeSREDA’s investment director, explains: “While we see several ICOs made by investment funds, most of them are not using equity token (meaning positioning it as a security) and do not follow the regulatory rules, related to securities. During such fundraisings even necessary KYC, risk assessment and compliance procedures (AML, CTF, PEP checks) are usually are not executed, and the source of funds and source of wealth assessment are never done, which are obligatory in dealing with securities.”
He adds, “Equity tokens are just starting to appear on the market and mainly introduced by already established and experienced players because this is much more complicated and demanding approach than fundraising via utility tokens.”
According to Pesin, the use of equity tokens raises legal complexities in terms of raising a fund in a jurisdictions like the US or Singapore, where ICOs can fall within the remit of the SFA if the ICO deals with a securities product, particularly with regard to due diligence elements such as KYC (know-your-client), AML (anti-money laundering), CTF (counter-terrorist financing) and PEP (politically exposed person) checks.
Raising a fund in Singapore also comes with regular internal and external audits, as well as additional requirements for information disclosure.
As for the liquidity options of LPs? Pesin elaborates: “Investors in those tokenized funds, which are structured in a proper and compliant way, get the same rights as in a classical limited partnership, meaning they own a share of underlying assets in the fund. Regarding the liquidity, they have several options for selling their equity or tokens to another accredited investor, they can redeem their stake or they can just wait for profit distribution after each successful exit.”
Goh Sze-Hui, a corporate partner in Eversheds Harry Elias,whose practice areas cover cross-border mergers and acquisitions, joint ventures, corporate finance and corporate restructuring, see’s the ICO phenomenon as a fluid and evolving space given its relative youth.
Asked for her take on issues surrounding the FundCoin ICO of the Dutch asset management firm Finles Capital — which would have been the first ICO by a private equity fund but was eventually suspended — Goh tells this portal that the matter highlights key points private equity players need to be aware of.
She explains: “Firstly, there is the question of choosing the jurisdiction for an ICO. As the article states, for example, many ICOs actively seek to exclude US investors, and for many ICOs this can be a reflection of (i) a lack of financial means to back an ICO in certain countries, and (ii) a lack of understanding of the relevant regulatory regime, and so a desire to exclude it.”
“Less common, however, as an option that should be seriously considered when performing an ICO, is whether to, instead of listing countries where an ICO is excluded, rather list the countries where the ICO is to be performed. This would allow the ICO provider to properly consider the framework where they are providing the ICO, and, since as a general rule of thumb marketing / financial promotion rules which apply are those in the country where the token is sold, makes it easier to be sure tokens are sold in compliance with all applicable regulation.”
“Secondly, and following on from the above, most countries will have a local regime for protecting investors. Therefore, just excluding investors from certain countries from investing does not equate to being able to do whatever you want in and ICO. Generally, all countries, for example, have rules against fraud and misrepresentation, which apply regardless of whether an activity is a so-called “regulated activity” or not.”
The growth of ICOs has also seen the emergence of platforms like Waves and CoinLaunch, which aim to simplify the ICO process and enable businesses to issue their own digital tokens and manage their ICOs.
Goh believes that such platforms are beneficial to both regulators, investors and entrepreneurs. She says, “These platforms can form a dual purpose. They can both facilitate the ICO process, as well as provide a validation mechanism (i.e. only ICOs of a certain quality may be accepted on a platform). As such, they are like to become increasingly popular as they form a framework beneficial to both the investor and the entity launching the ICO.”
“They also provide a natural hub of experts, who can then engage with regulators when developing the regulatory framework, as well as a mechanism for regulatory enforcement of that framework, as parties can be blocked from accessing the platform if they do not meet prescribed requirements. The exact end result if, of course, uncertain, given the nascent nature of these platforms, but there is definite potential form them to play a significant role ahead.”
“Traditionally, LPs write cheques to the VCs, but equity token sales give a broader pool of people a chance to gain exposure to the venture capital asset class and for VCs to raise more capital. That’s the theory anyway. Realistically, VCs fund managers will have to follow securities regulations regarding fundraising in the jurisdictions they are based in, which remain unchanged.”
He adds, “While I’m not sure of the benefits it would bring to the table, theoretically because of its blockchain basis and smart contract governance, it’s more transparent. If you’re a new fund trying to raise money, it may be an easier approach.”
Lee observes that while tokens have enabled investors to enjoy more rapid liquidity, he also notes that its possible for people to purchase tokens that cannot be redeemed for up to five years.
“If VCs were to raise funds and then focus on a non-traditional space, that makes a lot of difference; it depends on the rules that fund managers establish on the smart contract. The liquidity option for VC funds can see them liquidate in a month but pay it out in five years. The security token for your fund could the funds you’re allocating being frozen for the next five years before being redeemed.”
“This is a common approach taken by regulators in the US and the UK. Currently, there are around 1000 cryptocurrencies in existence, with a wide range of functionality and uses. As such, regulators will need to be careful that the regulatory regime put in place for cryptocurrencies is adaptable enough to cater for their wide range of possible uses.”
“Given this is the case, and given the need to ensure that cryptocurrencies do not become a way of mimicking existing structures without out proper regulation, currently, the functional approach suggested by the MAS is a sensible way forward.”
And at a time when ICOs are being launched from jurisdictions such as the US, Switzerland, Singapore, Canada and the UK, Goh see’s a consensus regarding ICO regulations being eventually achieved on an international basis as the ICO market matures.
She observes: “ICOs are a global phenomenon, and one of their advantages is that they can be used as a mechanism to attract global investment. However, legal systems are designed on a national level, which means that there can be national, and sometimes even regional, variation as regards which rules apply to any given scenario.”
“One way to counter this would be to obtain international agreement on a set of standards which would apply to ICOs which would then apply globally. However, this can be hard to achieve in practice, as different regulators are still forming their view on how favourably to treat ICOs.”
“ Even if a broad agreement were reached, countries may well still differ on the practical detail of what has been agreed, for example, most regulators would agree that if an investor is wronged the investor should be compensation, but there is no universal concept of what “compensation” actually means.”
Singapore’s brand strength also lies in its reputation as a relatively clean city with firm rules and as an established financial centre, with the city-state’s government prosecuting businesses that misbehave. Dr Finian Tan of Vickers Ventures, one of the largest and oldest venture capital (VC) firms in Southeast Asia, has argued for the need of caveat emptor to prevail when it comes to ICOs.
Asked if regulations could see utility tokens being open to all investor categories but equity tokens restricted to accredited and professional investors as a way to balance the interests of investors and ICO issuers, Goh opines: “The concept of caveat emptor is a curious one as, even in Roman times, it was based on the fact that there was information symmetry between buyer and seller, and so each could independently assess the asset being sold.”
“However, in respect to ICOs, very few investors, even those who are fully accredited and professional, can say that they understand all aspects of how ICOs work. The genesis of caveat emptor, namely that the buyer can check the product being bought for himself, does not apply here, as the buyer is unable to fully check the product, but rather must rely on others to assert its validity.”
She concludes: “In fact, our experience is that many of those launching ICOs are, in fact, keen not to take too restrictive an approach towards regulatory and legal compliance, because of the ability to confirm that an ICO meets certain regulatory and legal standards gives that ICO legitimacy, certainty and, hopefully, greater value.”
“Therefore, we do not see a world in which security tokens will necessary never be open to retail investors, as firms may well be happy to meet retail standards to be able to sell to retail. Conversely, having a utility coin does not guarantee simplicity and security, and so it may well be that sales of these tokens are restricted to only some types of investors in some circumstances. The overall picture, therefore, may well not neatly fall within the security token/utility token divide.”
Brisbane-based cyber security company Entersoft has successfully helped launch and protect $US1 billion of initial coin offerings to the world market without a single hack or lost token value. And the security support service for ICOs, which includes anti-phishing and smart contract security, has been …
Business Insider is the proud exclusive media partner for the 2018 Finnies, the annual Fintech Australia awards recognising leadership and innovation in the nation’s financial technology sector. Jobs for NSW is the presenting partner of the Finnies. Read more on the awards. »
Emmanuel Dunand/AFP/Getty Images
Brisbane-based cyber security company Entersoft has successfully helped launch and protect $US1 billion of initial coin offerings to the world market without a single hack or lost token value.
And the security support service for ICOs, which includes anti-phishing and smart contract security, has been operating for just 10 months.
Entersoft has since mid-2017 helped more than 30 companies launch ICOs, including blockchain startup Havven which in March this year raised $39 million in what is seen as Australia’s largest ICO.
Entersoft helped shut down scams, including 24 phishing sites and 17 Medium pages.
UK-based virtual and augmented reality company ImmVRse in March announced it was using Entersoft to provide cyber security for its upcoming token sale.
Entersoft is one of the entrants for FinTech Australia’s Finnie awards, across the “excellence in cyber security”, “establishing global market presence” and “excellence in fintech support services” categories.
Winners of the 2018 Finnies, the second year of awards, will be announced June 13.
Entersoft employs white hat hackers, some with ex-military intelligence backgrounds, who use their collective 40 years’ of experience to secure ICOs ahead of a launch. It has six staff in its Brisbane office.
Entersoft’s fees are based on a success-based model.
Mohan Gandhi and Paul Kang launched Entersoft in Brisbane in 2014. Indian-born Gandhi previously had a cyber security business in Bangalore in India. Brisbane-born Kang was working on cyber security issues at an Australian construction company.
The two met in India in November 2013 and the next year Gandhi decided to move to Australia to launch Entersoft. The company has since also set up an office in Hong Kong.
Gandhi says there’s extremely strong demand for cyber security services for ICOs
According to some estimates, more than $US400 million has been lost from ICO hacks since 2015.
Mohan Gandhi. Image: supplied.
“The majority of the hacks happen due to phishing scams through fake URLs and social media accounts, a lack of security around token sale websites or through exposing flaws in smart contracts,” Gandhi says.
“We have been able to successfully shut down these scams in all ICOs we have supported.”
Gandhi says the Australian Government should work with the fintech and cyber security industries to encourage people to come to the country to undertake ICO fund-raises.
“With its highly-regarded financial services regulation, and other fintech-friendly policies, Australia should be a natural world destination for ICOs,” says Gandhi.
“Other countries have generally taken a neutral or hostile position to ICOs, while Australia has laid out a roadmap for how they can be undertaken.
“ICO fund-raises can bring significant investment into Australia, as they generally require cyber security and legal support, along with the need to construct a white paper and build technology platforms.
“Despite the recent volatility in digital currencies, there is still huge global interest in ICOs with some many hundreds of these fund-raises expected across the globe over the next six months. This is an industry Australia should be chasing.”
Chinese-based startup InvestDigital in January raised $US23 million in an Australian-based ICO. The legal advisor for this fund raise said: “Australian regulators are particularly well informed in relation to cryptocurrencies and seems to have put more resources into understanding this sector than others.”
Analysis by CoinTelegraph says Australia was one of only four countries, alongside the US, Gibraltar and UAE, that had specifically regulated in favour of ICOs.
In late January, Entersoft beat companies from around the world to be named as the 2017 FinTech Startup of the Year at the Financial Technology Awards in Hong Kong.
* Business Insider is the proud exclusive media partner for the 2018 Finnies, the annual Fintech Australia awards recognising leadership and innovation in the nation’s financial technology sector. We will be bringing you all the best stories from Finnie entrants and Australia’s fintech industry in the lead-up to the gala awards ceremony on June 13. Jobs for NSW is the presenting partner of the Finnies. Find out more here.
NOW WATCH: Tech Insider videos
Want to read a more in-depth view on the trends influencing Australian business and the global economy? BI / Research is designed to help executives and industry leaders understand the major challenges and opportunities for industry, technology, strategy and the economy in the future. Sign up for free at research.businessinsider.com.au.