Category: E&S Group

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E&S Group debunk some of the most common DLT myths

Categories Blockchain, Cryptocurrency, ICOs, E&S Group, Technology

E&S Group debunk some of the most common DLT myths

The blockchain revolution is well underway but with so much uncertainty and ‘fake news’ circulating, it can be difficult to distinguish fact from fiction. At E&S Group, we pride ourselves at being at the forefront in the sector, so who better to set the record straight on some of the most common blockchain myths, than our director, Karl Schranz?

“Blockchain, Bitcoin, and DLT are all the same thing”

Whilst they are all related, this is just not true and in fact blockchain, Bitcoin and distributed ledger technology are all completely different things. Blockchain is a type of DLT, but not all DLTs are blockchain and we need to remember this before using the terms interchangeably as they can have very different meanings. As for Bitcoin, it is a cryptocurrency that runs on a DLT, in this case, the Bitcoin blockchain. So in other words, Bitcoin runs on a blockchain, which in turn is a type of DLT.

“Blockchain is just for criminals”

To deny any illicit activity on the blockchain would be a simple denial of facts, but this does not mean we should discard it completely. Crimes and illegal activities are conducted with fiat currency every day and we don’t outlaw it, instead, we make tougher regulations surrounding it and its use and we supervise it more closely. This is what needs to happen with blockchain, remember it is still a new technology and we need to regulate it in an evolutionary manner, as the technology continues to develop. Blockchains are used for countless legitimate, legal, and necessary tasks, the same as everything else.

“Blockchain is the cure for everything”

Whilst we have only just begun to scratch the surface of blockchain’s capabilities as they are vast, it would be overambitious to say that it can solve all of humanities problems. The technology is at its infancy, and like the internet, it will take a good few years to really establish itself. Furthermore, its purpose may continue to evolve over time. Whilst it cannot solve every problem in the business world, it does seem that it has a huge amount of use cases – some proven, some still yet to be proven – but I honestly believe we are seeing the start of something really important with blockchain and the possibilities it will bring.

“Blockchain is totally unhackable”

This is something I see bandied about quite a lot “blockchain is totally immutable and impenetrable to hackers” and this is not strictly true. The truth is that blockchains could fall victim to colluded attacks where one or more individuals with over 50% of mining power have the ability to cheat the network into accepting unlawful or nefarious transactions. Thankfully, the chances of this happening are very slim as it would require an almost impossible amount of computing power. Whatever technology emerges, someone somewhere is going to try to hack it, and whilst blockchain is more secure than many other things, we need to always bear in mind that nothing is completely hack-proof.

“Blockchains are all open”

There are two types of blockchain; public blockchains that are open to all, and private blockchains that are permission-based and are often controlled by a central authority or individual. This means that permission blockchains cannot be considered as completely decentralised, and some would argue if they are even really blockchains at all. A true blockchain is one that is a completely open source, open to all, and where all decisions are made based on consensus and community-backed voting.

If you have any questions in relation to ICOs, please send us an email on [email protected]

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A Half Year Report on virtual currencies in 2018

Categories Blockchain, Cryptocurrency, Regulatory, ICOs, Malta, ICO Legal Service, Law, The Blockchain Island, DLT Regulation, Smart Contracts, E&S Group, Technology, Trading, Cryptocurrency Exchange, Tokenomics, Regulation, Tokens, Binance, Utility Tokens, Security Tokens, DLT

A Half Year Report on virtual currencies in 2018

2018 has been an interesting year for crypto with colossal crashes, much-needed market adjustments, and of course, the emergence of a large number of new tokens and cryptocurrencies. Along with significant advances in regulation and legal frameworks that seek to understand, support, and protect those stakeholders operating within this new industry, there is no doubt that the rest of 2018 is going to be just as, if not more exciting as the previous six months.

Mid-January Market Crash

If you were holding Bitcoin in December 2017, you probably couldn’t believe your luck. As the value of a single Bitcoin headed towards $20k, a mad rush to invest ensued and predictions on where the price may head reached stratospheric new heights. Then on January 16th 2018, Bitcoin investors woke up to a nasty shock. The value of their coins had dropped by 15% and this news had a knock-on effect on the value of all other altcoins, causing a huge slump in the value of the market. The excitement and hype that had surrounded cryptocurrencies just a few days before, disappeared just like the profits of those who invested in it.

As prices continued to fall, investors started to panic. They started selling their coins in an effort to nip their losses in the bud and the moniker “Black Tuesday” was coined. Some crypto-coins saw losses of up to 40% and it seemed like many naysayers predictions were coming true and that the bubble had finally burst. Some voices remained steadfastly optimistic however and maintained that price slumps were common in all markets, not just the crypto one. After such an exponential increase in value, it was naturally expected that the market would correct itself because after every meteoric rise comes to a reverse-swing of the pendulum that needs to be ridden out – January was exactly that. As prices are now more stable it is hoped that they will increase at a steady rate, signalling a new era of market stability and maturity.

TRON Makes a Name for Itself

Since January of this year, TRON has experienced a steady increase in value. Despite a few issues, mainly caused by the crypto price-crash, it seemed to have found its niche which suggests a bright future for both the platform and its cryptocurrency.

TRON is a decentralised, blockchain-based, protocol project that functions as a content distribution platform for the digital entertainment industry. Whilst the platform itself is yet to go live the TRX coin is gaining significant traction.

Created by Justin Sun in 2017, the concept behind it is to establish a global network of free entertainment content which allows creators to publish, store and distribute their own content without the need for an intermediary. Whilst its value per coin was only $0.30 in January, it is expected to hit $1 by the end of 2018.

Its main selling point is that it is not just another cryptocurrency. It has a platform that solves a problem and offers functionality to a range of users and publishers. Over the last year, TRON has increased in value by 1.39% making it one of the top crypto coins in terms of growth, making it one to keep your eye on as we progress through 2018.

The Unexpected Rise of Litecoin

Many have dismissed Litecoin as “the poor man’s Bitcoin” but despite this, its popularity has increased drastically over the past few months. It was initially launched via an open-source client on GitHub in 2011, a sort of spin-off of the original Bitcoin Core client, but it offered much lower block generation times, a higher number of coins, a modified GUI, and a different hashing algorithm.

In 2013 it experienced a big surge in value and by May 2017 it had secured a spot as one of the Top 5 global cryptocurrencies in terms of its market cap. Now accepted by a wide range of online retailers, its adoption is increasing and many are seeing it as a better alternative to the rather bloated and over-inflated Bitcoin.

12 and even 6 months ago, blockchain was not something that was widely understood but as we progress to the end of 2018, it is expected that we will see a dramatic uptake of blockchain integration across a diverse range of sectors. Following in the footsteps of IBM, Microsoft, and Maersk, even smaller SMEs are likely to be interested in harnessing its potential.

Litecoin is predicted to peak at a value of over $600 per coin by the end of 2018 and there is no doubt that it has huge potential. Negating many of the issues that are faced by Bitcoin users, it presents a practical, simplified and completely viable alternative to the crypto-giant.

Malta Takes the Lead in Industry Regulation

In the last 12 months, it has seen cryptocurrency, blockchain and ICOs negate a minefield of regulatory and legal issues. Problems around its classification, AML and KYC regulations, and the reluctance of many banking institutions to support the burgeoning technology has resulted in many setbacks for the crypto world but that is all set to change.

The island of Malta has long been a hub for digital technologies and it is well known for its iGaming, Finserv and Fintech industries that when combined, account for around half of the country`s GDP. Then, in March 2018 the Government announced the drafting of three new bills that would seek to provide legal and regulatory clarification on DLT, crypto, and ICOs. These bills are the Virtual Financial Assets Bill which would provide a regulatory framework for ICOs and virtual currencies, the Malta Digital Innovation Authority Bill and the Technology Arrangements and Services Bill which will oversee companies that operate within the market, as well as providing a much-needed guidance and clarification.

This makes Malta the first jurisdiction in the EU, and the world to create a comprehensive legal framework that not only protects all stakeholders including operators and investors, but also supports the growth and development of the industry. By ensuring explicit legal clarification as well as adherence to AML and KYC regulations. This means that the industry will receive a much-needed confidence boost and will help to increase the  level of public trust in this new market sector.

Binance Relocates to Malta

As a result of Malta’s decision to support cryptocurrencies and related industries, an exciting announcement came just a few days later. Binance is the largest cryptocurrency exchange in the world and commands 10% of the global trading volume as well as having a market capitalistion of $1.3billion at the time of writing. Its founder Changpeng Zhao started Binance in July 2017 and in just a couple of short months, it has grown to be the market leader.

Following the introduction of restrictive laws in Japan and China regarding cryptocurrencies and exchanges, Binance was on the look out for a more welcoming and flexible home. On March 23rd, Binance announced their move to Malta and the crypto community rejoiced. Such a vote of confidence is a big deal for the small EU country and it is expected that such a move will encourage many other companies and startups to follow suit.

The Blockchain Boom

This time last year, most people had heard of the blockchain but only in the context of it being intrinsically linked to Bitcoin. Now, the technology has broken away from just monetary uses and has earned a lot of attention for its potential. In the last few months, more and more use cases have come to prominence at blockchain has found uses in industries such as logistics, healthcare, politics, real estate, and even crypto-powered beer vending machines. It has also been tipped to completely revolutionize the way we vote, as well as provide microloans to SMEs in developing countries and to solve the energy crisis in third world countries.

 

E&S Group is a leading corporate & law firm offering various services with regards to ICOs. Feel free to contact us directly on +356 20103020 or by email at [email protected] to find out how E&S can help you in ‘making things happen’.

For more information click the link.

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A Better Bet for Merchants: Altcoins or Bitcoins?

Categories Blockchain, Cryptocurrency, E&S Group, Bitcoin, Exchanges

A Better Bet for Merchants: Altcoins or Bitcoins?

There are lots of reasons why a merchant might be rather hesitant to accept cryptocurrency payments. One such reason is the fact that coins tend to become popular for a short time before fading away to obscurity within a couple of weeks. This means that what might be popular and widely used today, is unlikely to be being used in a month or two. Another main issue is volatility with even the largest and most well-known coins experiencing wildly fluctuating values on a day to day basis. By using coins that may disappear, or that may change in value from one moment to the next, merchants are taking a huge risk.

Despite this, a report from Coin Telegraph stated that 75% of US consumers would like to have the option to pay for products and services using cryptocurrency. This means that whilst businesses are not keen, public demand will force them to adopt cryptocurrencies at some point in the future. The biggest question that needs to be settled however is that of how to incorporate digital currency into traditional payment systems. In this article, we will take a look at whether Bitcoin or Altcoin is more suited to this role.

Bitcoin

As the main cryptocurrency in the market, BTC enjoys the largest market cap and the most well-known name. It is so popular that it is already being used by around 4000 shops around the world. Bitcoin is a good choice for those merchants that want a coin with a solid reputation, years of operation, and a large pool of active users. With around 28 million BTC wallets in existence, which is a very large number of users, it makes BTC by far the most dominant coin.

Altcoin

An altcoin is basically any cryptocurrency that is not Bitcoin. These can include Ethereum, Litecoin, Ripple, Dash, Monero, etc. Whilst Bitcoin is volatile with long transaction times and fees, most altcoins provide a much faster and cheaper alternative. For example, the average BTC transaction is around $0.72 per transaction, whereas Dogecoin or Bitcoin Cash are just a fraction of a cent for each transaction. Confirmation times are also far quicker with Altcoins and for this reason, it is a more practical and efficient approach for merchants and users.

So which one should merchants opt for? The answer is both, because in a market where popularity and prices wane, consumers should have the option to pay in a currency that they choose. The businesses that will survive well into the 4th industrial revolution, are the ones that are able to offer optimum flexibility to their clients, especially when it comes to making cheap and quick digital payments.

E&S Group can help you every step of the way of launching the cryptocurrency-related enterprise from marketing to tokenomics. Contact us on [email protected]

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A guide to token usage, utility, and value

Categories Blockchain, Cryptocurrency, ICOs, Malta, E&S Group, Technology, Tokenomics, Tokens, Utility Tokens, Security Tokens, Data, Cryptoeconomics

A guide to token usage, utility, and value

There is no shortage of information available about cryptocurrencies, but there is very little in the way of defining exactly the type of tokens. When it comes to technical details about blockchain, the concept of a cryptocurrency coin is well understood; a programmable currency until that is linked to a blockchain and relates to smart contract logic in the context of a certain software application. But when it comes to the non-technical details, what is a token?

A token is another way of naming a privately issued currency. When we consider sovereign governments that issue currency, they do so with set terms and governance, directing how the economy functions with fiat currency as the medium of value. Then, we have the blockchain with new types of organisations who issue their own currency in the form of digital assets, otherwise known as cryptocurrency. These issuers are setting their own rules and terms around their operations and essentially creating new, self-sustainable micro-economies.

In other words, what was once the sole preserve of governments, is now in the hands of anyone that has the capability to create their own tokens.

A few years ago, no one was talking about ICOs or STOs, or even token models, and with much confusion still present around these phenomena, this article is designed to make things a little clearer.

Tokenomics vs Cryptoeconomics

At E&S Group, we believe that there is a difference between tokenomics and cryptoeconomics. When we talk about cryptoeconomics we refer to the incentive structures that are designed to facilitate the creation and subsequent transaction validation of a particular cryptocurrency. For example, the cryptoeconomics of Bitcoin is designed to give Bitcoin miners a reason to mine new BTC. These miners validate each Bitcoin transaction and then receive newly minted BTC as a reward for their efforts.

Individuals, businesses, and users of BTC then pay a transaction fee to the miners so that their transaction is included in the mining of the next block. This means that even when all BTC has been mined (something that is estimated to happen in 2140), miners of Bitcoin will still be incentivised to keep mining and validating transactions.

This is what we refer to as cryptoeconomics. Whilst it is quite similar to tokenomics in terms of the incentivisation of stakeholders to ensure specific behaviour, there are some differences between the two.

Tokenomics focusses specifically on the application layer of a token so that the goal of it is to ensure that a crypto-token is used within the ecosystem as intended.

This means that tokenomics is not just about the supply and transaction validation of a token, but more about the things that happen afterwards. When we consider tokenomics, we have to consider what the token is used for and what behaviour we are trying to elicit.

Having explained that tokenomics is not the same as cryptoeconomics, we must define exactly what tokenomics entails as depending on who you speak to, it can have different meanings. For some, the tokenomics of an ICO refers to certain token metrics including supply and the amount that is reserved for founders and advisors to the project. Others believe that tokenomics is a four-layer model that comprises of token functionality, token distribution, token workflow, and token governance.

Token use

A token must have a purpose, and during the ICO boom this was mainly to raise funds to the project, but now things are changing. Even if the main goal is to raise funds, the token still needs to have an additional, secondary purpose. Eventually, the aim is for investors to use the token and not just to invest in it for later speculation.

Whether the token is used to start an online platform, or whether it is to incentivise another kind of behaviour, it is of the utmost importance that the purpose of the token is clear. To be able to set up a long-term sustainable token, it needs to be designed with the tokens utility clearly set out, because if not, it will hurt the business.

Token Utilisation

A second part of the tokenomics is the way that the token will be utilised. Once you have established your purpose, clarification needs to be given as to whether the token will be used, when it will be used, and how it will be used. Consideration also needs to be given to how often it will be used and by whom. Just because you have a clear purpose for the token, does not mean that people will use it effectively, therefore you need to do token research to understand how the token will be used.

Token utilisation is as important as token value. For example, what happens when the token increases in value due to speculation? In such cases, users of the platform will be less likely to use it for its intended purpose and more likely to hold it so that they can cash in at a later date.

Token functionality

Programmable money is a term that has been used to describe cryptocurrency tokens but you also need to have an idea of what sort of functions the token will have.

For example, in the case of a security token offering, a company can issue its shares as a token, therefore, providing a financing mechanism for the company whilst also providing value for the shareholders. To be able to provide such value, the token needs to be structured in such a way that allows people with no tokens to vote and receive dividend payments. Functions such as dividend payments of voting are clear examples of functionalities that could be programmed into the token.

Token Distribution

Another aspect of tokenomics is the way that it is distributed. Often, ICO projects make mistakes in their token distribution by making it fixed that is issued at just one time moment.

If we look at fiat currencies, their supply is never fixed, instead, the central bank is able to print more money or a local bank can provide a loan. These are both means of creating money where previously there was none. From this, we can ascertain that a fixed token distribution is likely to have negative effects on its value, inflation, and of course, usage. For these reasons, it is incredibly important that special attention is paid to how the token is distributed, for example:

  • When will the token go into circulation?
  • When will it leave circulation?
  • How much will be released at first?
  • How do current and projected utilisation and value coexist?

Token Value

The value of the token is another important aspect of tokenomics. When a token is issued as a share or security, the value of the token should be clear and straightforward. For example, if a company is valued at $50 million, and 10 million equity tokens are made available, each token/share should be worth $5.

If a token doesn’t have a clear value, things can get a lot more complicated. If an issuer thinks that a token is worth X, the market may put it at a different value. This can become even more complicated when you want to enable users to exchange tokens for specific services. If the value of a token falls in the market, the price should be adjusted by the issuer.

Tokens that work in the long-run

Tokenomics has a lot of complicated and very different facets that include token purpose, utility, functionality, distribution, and supply. But there are many others that can be taken into consideration such as mechanism design, stakeholder interviews, and token governance, meaning the good token design is not as easy as some would believe.

Even if all of these things have been given consideration, the task is still not completed because to properly set up a tokenised business due attention to other parts of the business such as the token market, the business technical infrastructure, and the token and revenue model. This is not an easy task and it is one that requires the help and guidance of a professional.

E&S Group has solid experience in designing tokenomics infrastructures, as well as advising companies on all of the other important aspects of creating a successful project. For further information please send us an email on [email protected]

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Blockchain island to welcome Waves

Categories Blockchain, Cryptocurrency, Malta, The Blockchain Island, DLT Regulation, E&S Group, Regulation, Waves

Blockchain Island to Welcome Waves

Waves, a popular decentralized blockchain application, is currently in talks to relocate all or some of its operations to the island of Malta.

This week CEO of Waves, Sasha Ivanov met with the Maltese Prime Minister, Joseph Muscat to discuss the accreditation required to operate within the country. Cooperation in terms of land registry, voting, healthcare and other sectors, as well as various proposals to use Waves as a platform for the tokenisation of financial instruments, was also discussed.

In a statement released by Waves, the meeting was described as “encouraging”. The statement added:

“We are interested in this accreditation and are ready to start working with Malta’s legal experts to bring our ready-to-use blockchain solutions here.”

Junior Finance Minister, Silvio Schembri added that there was a chance that the Maltese government would reach an agreement with the Russian company in the coming weeks. Good for Waves, the Russian state-owned manufacturing conglomerate Rostec has agreed to work with Waves on the development and implementation of the Waves platform for the management of data with $2 million being invested into the project.

This week, Waves also announced the launch of a new protocol that would allow smart contracts to run over the Waves main-net.

Over the last few months, Malta has seen an incredible influx of big-name cryptocurrency related businesses relocation to Malta. Binance, OKEx, BitBay, and ZB.com have all announced either a full relocation or the opening of operations in the country, now dubbed “blockchain island”.

This current influx of blockchain and crypto related businesses is due to the three acts that are to come into force on the 1st of November 2018 that will seek to regulate and define the burgeoning industry. These new laws will place Malta at the forefront of global regulation for cryptocurrency and related industries, making it something of a pioneer.

If you own or think of starting a blockchain-based business, then Malta should be at the top of your list when it comes to choosing a jurisdiction. To find out more about setting up a business in Malta, and all of the legal and regulatory requirements, please contact a member of our team here. E&S Group is perfectly positioned to help with setting up companies and business structures, providing fiscal and legal advice. Contact us on [email protected]

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The Importance of Tokens in Crowdfunding

Categories Blockchain, ICOs, E&S Group, Tokenomics, Tokens

The Importance of Tokens in Crowdfunding

As the crypto sphere continues to expand relentlessly, more and more ground-breaking use cases and offshoots of the technology are being developed and deployed into everyday usage.

One of the most recent and disruptive technologies was the Initial Coin Offering which has gone on to become one of the most controversial and divisive fundraising mechanisms that the world has ever known. It also gave way to a new type of assets – the ERC-20 token which often represents a share in the business, organisation, or project in question.

If a start-up wants to create a role-playing game that runs over the Ethereum blockchain, to raise funding to further development of the game and cover all expenses, it would decide to undertake an ICO. This means that a specific token is created and then sold in a token sale using other cryptocurrencies, the profits of which are then funnelled back into the project.

This method means that there is no need for venture capital, it forms a direct relationship between startups and crypto investors, without the need for an intermediary. There will be other stages of funding that include seed funding or private sales, but with ICOs, it is the public that generates most of the funds.

This is the most straightforward explanation of tokenomics; a self-funding mechanism for projects that exist within the crypto sector. Over the last couple of years’ billions of dollars have been raised this way and ICOs have even been endorsed by celebrities and leading global financial institutions.

At the moment, there is much confusion around the legality of ICOs and token sales with the SEC being the most hesitant to give their seal of approval. Whilst other jurisdictions have made headway in creating legislation, the general consensus seems to be that fraudulent behaviour and flagrant disregard for securities laws are generally evaded, and some kind of self-governance has established itself in the market.

A well-designed token should have a utility, resist inflation, be scalable, fungible, and able to be traded on an exchange.

But having a good grasp of tokenomics is essential to the success of both the ICO and the project. The how, who, what, and why of implementing a token within the ecosystem so that it can be used to facilitate the exchange of goods and services, is one of, if not the most important, part of the process.

To find out how to create the perfect tokenomics for your ICO or startup, contact E&S Group today by sending an email on [email protected]

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Refreshing KSU

Categories Malta, The Blockchain Island, E&S Group, University, Academics, Applications, Education, KSU

Refreshing KSU

E&S Group was participating in the KSU Fresher’s Week organised at the University of Malta, 1-5 of October. There are around 11,500 students, including about 1,000 international students from 92 different countries and 450 visiting overseas students, following full-time or part-time degree and diploma courses in the Maltese University. on the 1st week of October fourteen Faculties, eighteen Institutes, thirteen Centers and three Schools of the campuses in Msida and Valletta opened their doors for the freshers.

The opening ceremony was followed by numerous workshops, quests, games and activities organised by the University’s students communities and partnering organizations, including E&S Group which had its tent welcoming students and graduates. During the 5 days of the event, the company representatives from legal, accounting, corporate and marketing departments were inviting students with a related background to complete the internship with E&S Group. As a result, we got 37 applications from law students, 45 – from economists and accountants, and 35 application forms were filled in by undergraduates studying education, communications, media and design.

Except for spreading the information about its services and career opportunities, the E&S team also organised the competition where the winner is to get the tablet as the main prize. The number of participants reached almost 100! We are comparing top 5 results now to get in touch with the lucky winner as soon as possible, so keep your cell phone on.

E&S Group is growing and will be happy to see young talents among its professionals. If you miss the opportunity to visit our stand, the information about our operating principles, services and the company development can be also found in our brochure left in the following departments: Faculty of Economics, Management & Accountancy (FEMA), Faculty of Information & Communication Technology (ICT), Faculty of Laws, Institute of Digital Games, ICT Building, IT Services, Library, DegreePlus, KSU noticeboard.

 

E&S Group provides a range of services including ICO Legal Services, Corporate Services, iGaming, International Tax Planning, Financial Planning, Tokenomics, and more. If you are a student willing to work in one of these fields in the future, be sure to get in contact!

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Forbes quotes Muscat’s Bitcoin Prediction

Categories Blockchain, Cryptocurrency, Malta, The Blockchain Island, DLT Regulation, E&S Group, Bitcoin, Tokenomics, Regulation

Forbes quotes Muscat’s Bitcoin Prediction

The Prime Minister of Malta Joseph Muscat has recently gained the fame as one of the most often quoted politicians in the European space due to his statements on the development of the digital industry and its regulation.   He has already announced his positive attitude towards bitcoin and blockchain from the point of their ability to eliminate third party service providers, giving users more freedom over information and money.

Forbes writes about the “Massive Bitcoin Prediction” according to the statement of Malta Prime Minister Joseph Muscat in an address to the United Nations General Assembly, where he has expressed his belief that blockchain technology is the tool that will help digital currencies “inevitably” gain mass adoption and become the future of money.

“I passionately believe technology revolutionizes and improves systems,” said Muscat. “This is why in Malta, we have launched ourselves as the blockchain island.”

“By being the first jurisdiction worldwide to regulate this new technology that previously existed in a legal vacuum. Blockchain makes cryptocurrencies inevitable future of money. More transparent, it helps filter good business from bad business.”

“Emissions trading systems can be taken to the next level. We can help verify that humanitarian assistance is reaching its intended destination. We can make sure that nobody is deprived of their legitimate property because of compromised data.”

E&S has already written about the progressive attitude of the Maltese authorities towards blockchain and the interpreters operating within this space, coming up with the regulation on the 1st of November.

Operating in Malta, E&S Group adheres to the Maltese laws with regards to ICOs, cryptocurrency exchanges and tokenomics. If you require further information contact us by sending an email on [email protected]. We make things happen!

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E&S Group Announces Participation in KSU Fresher’s Week 2018

Categories Tax, iGaming, Blockchain, Cryptocurrency, Malta, ICO Legal Service, Law, E&S Group, University, Technology, Tokenomics, DLT, KSU, Corporate Services

E&S Group Announces Participation in KSU Fresher’s Week 2018

As Malta continues to stride towards solidifying its reputation as the ‘Blockchain Island’, E&S Group is proud to announce its participation in the KSU Fresher’s Week 2018 at the University of Malta.

Held in between the 1st-5th of October 2018, the KSU Fresher’s Week gives new students the opportunity to meet not only each other but also businesses involved in the sectors they may one day wish to work in. E&S Group will have a stand at the event where students are invited to come and meet the team, network, make contacts for future internship opportunities, and learn about the range of services the company provides. Students will also be able to get their hands on merchandise and enjoy a range of games and competitions throughout the week.

E&S Group is a boutique law firm, located in the heart of St Julian’s. Whilst based in Malta, their client portfolio has a global reach across multiple sectors and disciplines. As Malta’s cryptocurrency and blockchain sector continue to increase, so does the demand for special legal professionals with an interest in these emerging industries.

Lawyers and accountants with experience and knowledge in ICOs, cryptocurrency, and blockchain technology are in demand, and as the sector is still in its infancy, this demand is set to grow exponentially. E&S Group is looking to inspire, educate, and develop the talents of potential digital market participants, as well as to attract the island’s brightest professionals to a sector that is set to revolutionise the local, and international economy.

E&S Group provides a range of services including ICO Legal Services, Corporate Services, iGaming, International Tax Planning, Financial Planning, Tokenomics, and more. If you are a student willing to work in one of these fields in the future, be sure to stop by the E&S Group stand to say hello!

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1st of November – Maltese Regulation Comes into Force

Categories Blockchain, Cryptocurrency, ICOs, Malta, Law, The Blockchain Island, DLT Regulation, E&S Group, MFSA, VFA Act, DLT

1st of November – Maltese Regulation Comes into Force

Since March, the Maltese government has begun discussing the ways to regulate the Distributed Ledger Technology (DLT) and the related digital space, including Initial Coin Offerings (ICO), cryptocurrency exchanges, Blockchain based companies, FinTech and Artificial Intelligence (AI). Through this progressive approach taken by the authorities, many big corporations namely, Binance, OKEx and Neufund have chosen Malta to be the place for business relocation. These companies have also helped the Maltese government to draft such progressive laws, encouraging more businesses to transfer their operations to the island. Prime Minister Dr Joseph Muscat tweeted that “[Malta’s] aim [is] to be[come] the global trailblazers in the regulation of blockchain-based businesses and the jurisdiction of quality and choice for world-class fintech companies”.

On the 4th of July 2018, the Maltese parliament unanimously passed three laws, namely: Malta Digital Innovations Authority (MDIA), Virtual Financial Assets Act (VFAA) and the Innovation Technology Arrangement and Services Act (ITAS). This was a success, making Malta a leader in this ever-growing industry, hence dubbed as “The Blockchain Island”.

The industries had been waiting for these laws to be implemented for a long time. Regarding the Innovative Technology Arrangements and Services Act, 2018 (ACT No. XXXIII of 2018) the Minister for the Digital Economy has established the 1st November 2018 as the date on which the provisions of the said Act shall come into force. In exercise of the powers conferred by article 1(2) of the Virtual Financial Assets Act (ACT No. XXXIII of 2018), 2018, the Parliamentary Secretary for Financial Services, Digital Economy and Innovation, in consultation with  Malta  Financial  Services  Authority,  has  established  the  1st November 2018 as the date on which the Act shall come into force.

The MDIA, which falls under the Malta Financial Services Authority (MFSA), has already been in operation.

What do the VFA Act and the ITAS Acts change?

One of the most important acts is the VFAA, as it regulates the whole Initial Virtual Financial Assets Offering and Virtual Financial Assets ecosystem and increases transparency requirements. The high-level principles and means of prosecution are applied to those who abuse market regulations, for example, by not adhering to the 5th anti-money laundering directive.

The VFAA covers the following; offering of VFAs, regulation of all services providers operating on the VFA space; licencing of all requirements and obligations of ICO issuers or those companies providing any kind of services to ICOs; structuring and implementing the financial instrument tests, identifying the minimum disclosure requirements for ICO whitepapers, control on marketing and advertisement of VFAs.

The law attests that every ICO better named by law as “initial virtual financial asset offering” or “initial VFA offering” needs to pass the Financial Instrument Test to be presented to the MFSA. The Financial Instrument Test is led by VFA Agents, which have to undergo a test to obtain a license from the respective authority. The law states that the VFA Agent is to be a source of guidance between the VFA issuer or the VFA service provider applicant, acting as a contact person between the MFSA and the client.

On the other hand, the ITAS is defined as “a regulatory framework which will be set up for the registration of Technology Service Providers (System Administrators and Auditors) and the certification of Technology Arrangements.” Its role is to “provide for the regulation of designated innovative technology arrangements referred to in the Act, as well as of designated innovative technology services referred to in the Act, and for the exercise by or on behalf of the Malta Digital Innovation Authority of regulatory functions with regard thereto.”

The ITAS provides a liaison with the MDIA. Its purpose is to seek all relevant authorisation by the MDIA.

Operating in Malta, E&S Group adheres to the Maltese laws with regards to ICOs, cryptocurrency exchanges and tokenomics. If you require further information contact us by sending an email on [email protected]. We make things happen!

 

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