AMA MEXC Global
Date: December 21, 2021
Guest: Darren Wong, IX Swap Head of Strategic Partnerships and Asset Listings and Joe Wan, IX Swap Community Manager
Host: Iris (MEXC Global)
Darren: Hi everyone, great to be here! Thanks for having us! My name is Darren Wong, and I am the Head of Asset Listings and Strategic Partnerships here at IX Swap.
Given my past experience in finance and real estate, along with co-founding two startups in tech and in blockchain, the road that led me here was inevitable.
My background in finance provided exposure to a vast selection of products from within investment banking and private banking, working with both large corporates and high net worth individuals. This allowed me to understand both the efficiencies and inefficiencies in the financial system.
During my first start-up stint in VR for real estate, I discovered the use of blockchain that fully fascinated me, which led me to my second startup. Setting up my blockchain consultancy and accelerator since the later part of 2017 allowed me to see and unlock the potential of blockchain in various industries, which naturally, led me back to wanting to solve the inefficiencies in traditional finance and to be able to set precedence to create a whole segment for the future of finance.
With the STO market heating up more in the past year than before, we are excited to be guiding the space to new heights!
Joe: My name is Joe Wan and I’m the Community Manager at IX Swap. My background is in digital marketing, always working for technology startups.
Now I joined the IX Swap team to help spread the project’s vision and mission to the blockchain community, as well as the great work the team is doing to make an impact in the STO market.
Thank you very much for welcoming us to this AMA!
Iris: What is IX Swap? Can you share with us more in detail?
Darren: Sure let me get this. IX Swap is a decentralized exchange that brings fractionalized real-world assets, such as real estate or company shares, to the blockchain and enables the trading of such in a legally compliant manner. Because IX Swap fractionalizes real-world assets, what was previously unaffordable to most, is now affordable.
This enables people of all economic backgrounds to partake in the purchase of some of the most sought after investments previously only dreamed of, and for companies and holders of shares and assets to access new ways of making their assets available to the public. The big problem so far in doing something like this was the lack of liquidity in the markets.
IX Swap solves the key liquidity problem in the industry caused by a lack of market makers and strict licensing requirements. IX Swap is the “Uniswap” of the Security Token (STO) / Tokenized Stock (TSO) industry.
On top of that, IX Swap is blockchain, custodian, and broker-dealer-agnostic meaning that IX Swap plans to connect to as many blockchains, custodians, and broker-dealers to build out the STO ecosystem globally.
Iris: What triggers you to launch IX Swap? What are some of the real-world problems/pain points that IX Swap aims to solve? And what is the unique selling proposition?
Joe: Security tokens have existed for some time, but they never really took off, mainly due to the lack of liquidity solutions/infrastructure in the market. Most STO exchanges now are currently operating on an OTC model. Investors who had bought STOs in the past were not able to realize gains easily due to the lack of trading venues. With IX Swap, traders will finally be able to access deeper liquidity and trade STOs freely over an open market.
Similarly, STO issuers will be able to create their own trading liquidity. They will be able to create their own liquidity pools for investors, providing tradeability and liquidity for their own tokens (Similar to how we see it in cryptocurrency today).
The ability to create your own liquidity and to be able to participate in market-making activities will create a paradigm shift in the issuance and ecosystem of the STO industry. This has never been done and is a game-changing solution to the industry’s well-known liquidity problem.
The liquidity pools for the security tokens work similarly to other AMM models. IX Swap allows Security token holders to become liquidity providers by depositing their security tokens into liquidity pools and receiving a share of the fees in return.
Part of the USP is the team, experienced across start-ups, legal, investment banking, blockchain, we need a really high level of brainpower to execute and the support of our community, of course, it also took us many years to build relationships with leading STO platforms in the world who all want to partner with IX Swap.
Iris: What is the role of $IXS in IX Swap? Would you tell us more about its tokenomics?
Darren: Strap your seat belts because this will be quite informative. Here are the features of the IXS tokens –
- IXS token holders will be able to stake their tokens on IX Swap to receive an interest rate as income. Platform earnings in the future will also be distributed to IXS token holders
- IXS token holders will also be able to stake their tokens for governance related to the activity of IX Swap.
- IXS token holders will also receive priority access to new STO issuances on the InvestaX primary STO issuance platform.
- Investors/traders on the IX Swap platform will be able to trade with more liquid markets compared to what is available now and will also be able to earn income by doing this.
- Issuers will be able to create their own liquidity pools and earn a portion of the trading fees to create their own liquidity. This in itself will create a paradigm shift for the industry providing this groundbreaking liquidity solution for the STO/TSO ecosystem.
We also reward early IXS holders with a boosted yield when staking IXS with us early along with many other exciting opportunities to come which we will release in due time.
Iris: So many use cases 👍
Darren: Now for the token allocation, let me share an image first:
As you can see from our tokenomics, we have ensured that tokens are released gradually over time to avoid inflating token supply too quickly. Furthermore, the team/strategic partnerships are all vested over a 3 year period which is longer than most projects. We want to ensure that the team is aligned with payouts with the long development roadmap for IX Swap.
The IXS tokens also have a distinct deflationary economics function to ensure value is created for our token holders the more the platform is used.
- 5% of Fees will be sent to a permanently locked vault reducing the overall token supply.
- 5% of Fees will also be sent to a vault to purchase IXS tokens.
- Rewards earned on the platform will be distributed over time to ensure token inflation is reduced.
These factors will create a deflationary effect on tokens the more the platform is used.
Do stay tuned for more utility of IXS that will be upcoming!
Iris: Are there any exciting news or updates with regards to IX Swap that you would like to share with the users?
Joe: We expect the platform to be fully functional by Q1 2022. That said, we will be rolling out features along the way that ecosystem participants will be able to contribute and benefit from. Given that this is the first in the world and we are dealing with securities and licensed intermediaries, we will be conducting rigorous testing to ensure that our stakeholders are provided with a seamless and safe environment for trading STOs.
This is our roadmap. So we have an exciting Q1 ahead of us 😄 but there are more. As you can see from the project roadmap, we will be rolling out:
Q1 2022 — STO Swap for Private Market Assets
The STO Swap features will be released on our platform with the following functionalities:
- Broker-Dealer Connectivity
- Custodian Connectivity
- Security Token (non-traded) Swaps
- Volatility Mitigation Functionality
We will also complete a smart contract audit for the STO Swaps (non-traded), within this stepping stone.
Q1 2022 — Staking Contracts Update
To give users a better product, we are updating our staking contracts. In this upgrade, auto-compounding features will be included such that you do not need to manually claim and re-stake rewards. Auto-compounding will enable you as a user to earn more while not having to spend fees or to re-stake anymore.
A Smart Contract Audit Completion will be included in this update.
Q1 2022 — F-NFT Primary
To give our users who might not have enough to get into the NFT plays a way in, we will be bringing primary issuance of Fractionalized NFTs.
Owners of NFTs will be able to conduct primary raises through fractionalized NFTs and the primary raise will have a direct contribution to the IXS Liquidity pools through our Fractionalized Market Proposal (FMP).
A smart audit completion will also be included in this update.
Q1 2022 — F-NFT Swaps
In this quarter, we’ll also introduce Fractionalized NFT Swaps.
The Swaps will flow directly from the fractionalized market proposal into the liquidity pools for secondary trading.
A smart audit completion will also be included in this update.
Q2 2022 — STO Swap Upgrade
In the second quarter of 2022, IXS STO Swaps will be integrated onto the Polygon network shortly after Project Janus has been completed.
Q2 2022 — Project Janus
Details will be released at a later stage.
Q3 2022 — TSO Swaps for Public Market Assets
Next up we have Tokenized Stock Swaps (For traded securities). We will include Oracle functionalities in this model of the TSO Swaps which will be tradable. A Smart Contract Audit Completion will be included in this update.
Iris: If you were to summarize your project in ONE word, what would it be? Why?
Darren: Believe it or not, this may be the first time we were asked this so good question. I would have to go with revolutionary.
We are the first platform to provide liquidity pools and automated market-making functions for the security token (STO) & tokenized stock industry (TSO). IX Swap will also be the first DeFi platform to facilitate the trading of security tokens through licensed custodians and security brokers, providing actual ownership and claim over these real-world assets.
These infrastructure rails will essentially allow security token holders to provide liquidity to IX Swap pools and receive a share of the fees of the pool allowing liquidity providers to take part in the fees previously earned by exchanges and market-makers. Giving back the power to asset owners!
Q1. On your website, you don’t mention that you have done any internal or external audit of your smart contract, so can you give us details if you have done any audit before? And in case you haven’t, would you plan to perform any review of your smart contract in the near future?
Darren: Good question and noted. We should have that on our main page somewhere. We actually have it in our blog and have done our initial audit with Zokyo. And are pending our 2nd audit with another known auditor.
You can find that on their main page at https://www.zokyo.io/audit-reports, and we have scored full marks with them.
Q2. What is your global expansion plan? At present, which market do you focus on, or on building and developing to win customers, users and partners? 
Darren: As a platform, we are jurisdiction-agnostic. This means that we are not tied by any jurisdiction but instead are bound and compliant with each securities law. This means that any platform, custody, or STOs can connect with IX Swap and interact with the platform once KYC/AML is done and a whitelist of addresses will be allowed for tokens within each of our jurisdictions and invalid for any sanctioned regions. Hence we are not tied to focus on a specific region as a base but are open to the global audience, as we are speaking to projects and platforms all around the world, from the US to Europe to Asia and to Australia.
Having said that, we will be working to grow markets and communities in regions that are less tapped and to build these will local moderators that believe in the project with us to allow access to new markets. This will also take time as the team will like to also get to know its local markets and be present to hear the needs of each community and to resolve issues around STOs with them. That is how we will continue to grow as a global country-agnostic platform. We are here for the future of finance and the needs of the people that come with it
Q3. Thanks for the insights. Given that we are getting close to the launch of the exchange in Q1 of 2022, could you please share a little more insights on the progress in terms of marketing to actual STO buyers/sellers and exchanges? What are some of the challenges you are facing in your marketing efforts?
What are the sense from the STO exchanges and STO investors when marketing to them? What is their response when hearing about IXS? What are the common positive takeaways and pushbacks or roadblocks in getting them signed on, and how do we plan to get them on board with us?
Darren: We are actually speaking to a few known projects that have launched STOs and a few that have not, as we build our listings for the launch of the exchange.
In terms of marketing the actual STOs, these will be firmed up with our projects with the use cause of IXS possibly as bonuses for marketing to give IXS even more utility. Challenges always will come back to compliance and regulations as in many areas and jurisdictions you are not allowed to market private securities, which will only be able to have access for more sophisticated investors, but we working out on best practices in such cases
In terms of STOs, we are quite blessed that we have been working and discussing with projects that are very keen themselves to have assets in a compliant DeFi manner and will be a test case for many multi-asset owners prior to bringing more products. And such, we will soon bring confidence to the market, and naturally, other STOs will follow, but you are right about roadblocks, given most of them come with compliance and infrastructures on the blockchain that has never been built!
We can see these moving too as we see local governments now also classify native issuance of securities on the blockchain that is recognized, such as the eVCC structure in Singapore. So many more milestones from the STO space that will allow us to tackle the issues as they come
Q4. Can you tell us about your team members? are they qualified and professional in their fields? what are the recruiting qualifications for team members for your extraordinary project?
Johan: We have a great team! One of our strengths is the members of the IX Swap family. Overall, our team has built more than 15 companies between the different team members, so this is not the first project they have built from scratch, and we have a lot of experience in launching projects and companies.
Our team is very diverse, with expertise in a wide range of areas, from capital markets to blockchain, including a very strong legal team (something very important in a project like this), development team. All the information of our team is public, and on this page https://ixswap.io/team/. You can find all the information and see the profiles of each of the pieces that make up this company, see their LinkedIn profiles, etc.