SGX, Temasek put up APAC’s first exchange-led digital asset venture

Singapore Exchange (SGX) and Temasek have entered into a joint venture, which is touted to be Asia Pacific’s first exchange-led digital asset venture focused on capital markets workflows through smart contracts, ledger and tokenisation technologies.

This partnership builds on the successful collaboration among SGX, Temasek and HSBC that culminated with the issuance of Asia’s first public syndicated digital bond for Olam International in August 2020. 

SGX’s digital asset issuance, depository and servicing platform was used to issue four digital bonds by several issuers, with a total size of more than S$1 billion.

The new joint venture combines SGX’s multi-asset experience and strengths in operating market infrastructure to the highest regulatory standards, together with Temasek’s expertise in blockchain technology and ecosystem connectivity. 

The joint venture intends to partner with fixed income issuance platforms to connect to its post-trade and asset servicing infrastructure, providing issuers, arranger banks, lawyers, investors and paying agents with a comprehensive, issuance-to-settlement network for Asia bonds. 

Concurrently, the joint venture will focus on other existing and emerging asset classes that have seen growing market demand, including funds and sustainable finance.

“The early success in our digital bond issuance platform has paved the way for SGX to make a larger move into digital assets, and we are very excited to take our digital asset business to the next level in partnership with Temasek,” said Lee Beng Hong, SGX senior managing director and head of fixed income, currencies and commodities.

“Together, we will capitalise on digitalisation trends that continue to shape global capital markets, and advance the development of capital markets infrastructure in Asia,” said Lee.

Pradyumna Agrawal, managing director of Blockchain@Temasek, added that they have been tracking the evolution of financial market systems and the opportunities for development of digital infrastructure that will transform how financial transactions are conducted.