Bitcoin Suisse

Bitcoin Suisse

Bitcoin Suisse AG is a Swiss-regulated financial intermediary specializing in crypto-financial services, based in Zug, Switzerland.

Bitcoin Suisse AG is a Swiss-regulated financial intermediary specializing in crypto-financial services, based in Zug, Switzerland.

The company, established in 2013, is headed by CEO Arthur Vayloyan and Chairman Niklas Nikolajsen (Co-founder). As a regulated Swiss financial intermediary (SRO – VQF member) since 2014, Bitcoin Suisse AG offers prime brokerage, custody, collateralized lending, staking, tokenization, and other crypto-financial services for private, institutional, and corporate clients.

History

Bitcoin Suisse AG was founded in 2013, in Zug Switzerland, by Niklas Nikolajsen and is Switzerland’s oldest professional company active in the field of crypto-financial services. Bitcoin Suisse AG held a crucial position in the development of the “Crypto Valley”, together with other private and public stakeholders.

In June 2014, Bitcoin Suisse started to deploy the first ever Bitcoin ATM in Switzerland. Later the operation of the Bitcoin ATMs was transferred to one of the subsidiaries, Värdex Suisse AG.

In July 2014, Bitcoin Suisse AG joined the VQF, The Financial Services Standards Association, which is a self-regulatory organisation (SRO), and became the first member specialized in crypto assets. Bitcoin Suisse AG helped facilitating the first ever fiat-crypto crowdsale for the Ethereum Foundation in August 2014. Because of the early involvement in the Ethereum Project, the company started the first large crypto-mining facility in Switzerland in mid-2016. Bitcoin Suisse developed a payment gateway system for crypto currencies which was deployed by the government of the council of Zug in July 2016. The city of Zug was the first public entity in the world to accept Bitcoin as payment option. Following the acceptance of Bitcoin, the first ever 6-digit CHF tax payment was made in Bitcoin through Bitcoin Suisse in September 2016.

In 2017 Bitcoin Suisse AG founded Swiss Crypto Vault AG, a company that specializes in secure custody of crypto assets. Swiss Crypto Vault AG is the technology provider for the custody offering of Bitcoin Suisse AG. In November 2019, Swiss Crypto Vault AG successfully completed a series of independent audits including ISAE 3402 reporting. In early 2017 Bitcoin Suisse AG assisted Melonport Foundation with its funding and popularized the Initial Coin Offering (ICO) model. Through 2017 Bitcoin Suisse helped raise over $1.1 Billion for different ICO-entities such as Omisego, Zilliqa, Bancor and Tezos. According to the magazine “Crowdfund”, Bitcoin Suisse was the most active ICO-agency in 2017.

In November 2017, Dr. Arthur Vayloyan joined Bitcoin Suisse AG as CEO and Niklas Nikolajsen was elected Chairman. In December 2017, Bitcoin Suisse AG took over the main sponsorship for the Danish ice hockey club Rungsted Ishockey, from the Danish Saxo Bank. This was the first time that a company specialized in crypto-financial services sponsored a professional Sports team, active in a premier league. The Rungsted Arena was renamed the Bitcoin Suisse Arena. In July 2018, Bitcoin Suisse AG founded Swiss Crypto Tokens AG, with the purpose of providing services related to the issuing of tokens. With the official release of the Crypto Franc (XCHF) in October 2018, the first Swiss franc backed stablecoin was created.

In November 2018, Bitcoin Suisse AG joined as a founding member of the Swiss Blockchain Federation, in which Dr. Arthur Vayloyan holds a position in the Board. In December 2018, Bitcoin Suisse AG founded Bitcoin Suisse (Liechtenstein) AG. The company subsequently further increased its focus on its presence in Liechtenstein with the hiring of Mauro Casellini, now CEO of Bitcoin Suisse (Liechteinstein) AG, in April 2019. In July 2019, Bitcoin Suisse AG submitted an application to FINMA (Swiss Financial Markets Supervision Authority) for a Swiss banking licence according to the Swiss Banking Act, Art. 1a, combined with an application for a securities dealer‘s licence, regulated under the Stock Exchange and Securities Trading Act (SESTA).

In July 2019, Bitcoin Suisse AG climbed Breithorn with 70 of its employees and conducted the "highest bitcoin trade ever recorded" on the summit of Breithorn, according to the company.

In October 2019, Bitcoin Suisse AG facilitates early sale of rights for Emaar EMR token sale, which will be part of the Emaar Properties tokenized referral and loyalty program. The EMR platform will reward users using the EMR utility token via an app for their loyalty and provide referral opportunities with redemption of rewards in Emaar’s real estate, hotels, e-commerce and owned retail.

In November 2019, Bitcoin Suisse AG announced the signing of a letter of intent for a partnership with Worldline to offer cryptocurrency payment services to Swiss merchants and consumers both in-store and in web-shops. The cooperation will leverage the existing nationwide payments infrastructure of SIX Payment Services, which is part of Worldline since the end of 2018.

In December 2019, the company announced a cooperation in forming a working group with Lykke, SEBA Bank AG and Sygnum AG to support the OpenVASP initiative with an open-source technical implementation of the proposed protocol. OpenVASP is an open protocol put forth in a white paper by David Riegelnig, Head Risk Management at Bitcoin Suisse AG, to implement FATF's travel rule for virtual assets.

Offering
Trading and Brokerage

Bitcoin Suisse AG offers clients trading and brokerage services of crypto currencies. The company is considered the largest Swiss broker for crypto currencies. Since 2017 Bitcoin Suisse AG has been cooperating with Falcon Private Bank to enable its clients to invest in crypto-currencies such as Bitcoin, Ether, Litecoin and Bitcoin Cash. Through Bitcoin Suisse's service, Falcon Private Bank's clients gain access to crypto asset management solutions.

Custody

To store crypto assets, Bitcoin Suisse AG offers proprietary custody. The Bitcoin Suisse custody solution is ISAE 3402 audited and underwent several audits by PwC, Grant Thornton and Zühlke. This solution was developed by Bitcoin Suisse AG’s subsidiary Swiss Crypto Vault AG which acts as technology provider.

Collateralized Lending

Bitcoin Suisse AG offers loans against crypto assets as collateral to increase cash flow and provide fiat liquidity against a pledge of crypto assets. According to the firm, loans in USD, EUR, GBP and CHF, are possible. Conversely, Bitcoin Suisse AG offers loans in BTC and ETH against a pledge of fiat assets.

Initial Coin Offerings (ICOs)

Bitcoin Suisse assists ICO organizers and offers various services in this context. The company has been involved in numerous Initial Coin Offerings (ICO), including some of the largest: Bancor ($153 million), Status ($100 million) and Tezos ($206 million). According to Crowdfund Insider magazine, Bitcoin Suisse is the world's most active ICO brokerage and advisory firm. A recent project was conducted for EMAAR Properties PJSC for which Bitcoin Suisse AG facilitated the early sale of rights for Emaar EMR tokens, which will be part of the Emaar Properties tokenized referral and loyalty program.

Staking

Bitcoin Suisse AG offers staking services for Tezos and Dash. On 27th November 2019, Bitcoin Suisse AG announced that Ethereum 2 (ETH2) custodial staking will be offered as well, as soon as Ethereum 2 launches.

Crypto Payments

Bitcoin Suisse AG offers a payments solution which allows businesses to accept Bitcoin or Ether as payment. Bitcoin Suisse AG receives the Bitcoins and then transfers the corresponding fiat amount to the client. The City of Zug has been using this solution since July 2016 for various kinds of payments, including taxes. Furthermore, the commercial register of Zug as well as the institution of higher education of Luzern also accepts Bitcoin as payment option since late 2017. In November 2019, Worldline announced a partnership to facilitate cryptocurrency acceptance for payments both at the point of sale and in e-commerce for Worldline’s network of more than 85000 merchants in Switzerland.

Additional products

In 2014 Bitcoin Suisse introduced the first series of physical Bitcoin-certificates. These paper wallets have the typical security features as physical money, such as holograms and serial numbers. In 2019, Bitcoin Suisse AG has launched a new series of Crypto Certificates which are available for following currencies: Bitcoin, Ether, Bitcoin SV, Bitcoin Cash.

Bitcoin Suisse AG’s subsidiary Swiss Crypto Tokens AG issued the Swiss Franc stable coin (XCHF) which is backed by Swiss Francs. According to Bitcoin Suisse AG’s website, investors can use XCHF as protection against volatility, while remaining in the crypto environment. The XCHF token is issued on the Ethereum blockchain and adheres to the ERC-20 standard. Bitcoin Suisse has placed Bitcoin ATMs in most major cities in Switzerland. In mid-2014 Switzerland’s first Bitcoin ATM was deployed in the capital Bern.

Regulation

Bitcoin Suisse AG is regulated by the self-regulatory organization VQF (The Financial Services Standards Association), on behalf of the FINMA (Swiss Financial Market Authority).

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Omar Faridi
June 18, 2020
Crowdfund Insider
Blockchain platform Ontology and Bitcoin Suisse to strengthen European and Asian digital Asset and DLT ecosystems.
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