Bittrex Global has launched trading in tokenized stocks such as Apple, Tesla and Amazon on its digital asset exchange.
The platform said traders and investors will have direct access to listed companies – also including Google, Facebook, Netflix, Pfizer and others – without having to use an external broker or pay additional fees.
Launched in a collaboration with DigitalAssets.AG, the tokenized shares can be purchased in fractions using either U.S. dollars, tether and bitcoin. The listings also open up access in countries without access to U.S. stock markets, Bittrex said.
Traditional clearing systems “are inefficient and complex and trading small volumes can be expensive and take days, all of which is totally unnecessary given the technological advances that have been made in the last decade,” said Bittrex CEO Tom Albright.
Tokenized stocks looks to be growing trend among cryptocurrency firms. In October, crypto derivatives exchange FTX announced it would allow users of the exchange to register to trade on over 12 equity and cryptocurrency pairs.
And stablecoin platform Terra announced last week the launch of the Mirror Protocol, a way to mint crypto assets that mimic the value of shares in publicly traded companies.
To be clear, Bittrex is not listing actual company shares, but digital assets “backed 1:1 to traditional stocks, entitling holders to the same economic benefits of owning the underlying stock.”
Bittrex said its stock tokenization initiative is the first step towards creating more accessible markets where securitized token offerings can harness more mature and varied investors.
In future, the company plans to bring exposure to exchange-traded funds, indices and other asset classes.