Raks Sondhi from the independent reserve: “Now the marathon begins”

The Australia-based crypto exchange announced on Friday that it had received a full license to provide digital payment token (DPT) services in Singapore and had big plans for growth.

“IIt took us 19 months to get to this place, but we have only just reached the start line, ” Raks Sondhi, mManaging Director, Independent Reserve, Singapore, said finews.asia.

The exchange is one of the first virtual asset service providers in Singapore to obtain a DPT license, joining DBS Vickers and fintech firm Fomo Pay, following a process that involved a review by MAS to revise its policies and procedures regarding customer protection mechanisms, transaction filtering, and compliance structures, as well as the robustness of its IT services.

“We know what we have in place in terms of process, systems, governance and the right people, and that the frameworks we have in-house will be able to accommodate all MAS regulations,” said Sondhi about the licensing process.

More services planned

Independent Reserve launched its operations in 2013. Sondhi said the city-state’s well-regulated environment was one of the reasons it chose Singapore as the first international outpost.

Currently, Independent Reserve provides a spot exchange for fiat-crypto trading pairs SGD, AUD, USD, and NZD, with 10 tokens that are publicly traded. In the coming weeks, he will add six to eight more chips, Sondhi said.

“We have other products in mind, but what we need to consider when launching these products is the licensing regime for them,” he added.

“Huge interest”

Sondhi noted the interest the Independent Reserve has generated since it obtained MAS approval in principle in August, with an influx of retail and institutional investors.

“Globally, the interest of institutions in digital assets is enormous. You’ve seen all of these major players now who are actually coming in to transfer assets or diversify their portfolios or balance sheets into cryptocurrencies, and we want to support them, ”Sondhi said.

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