CLST Completes Multi-Million Raise led by Spartan Group, Coinbase Ventures, Kraken Ventures, and Additional Top-Tier Investors


Zurich, Switzerland – July 27, 2022 – CLST (pronounced “Caeleste”), an institutional-only lending and borrowing venue for stablecoins and crypto assets, has successfully closed a multi-million USD seed round, led by Spartan Group, with participation from Coinbase Ventures, Kraken Ventures, GSR, Menai Financial Group, Luno Expeditions, a subsidiary of Digital Currency Group, and TX Ventures – the VC investment arm of TX Group.

A one-stop-shop for peer-to-peer lending and borrowing, CLST attracts digital asset lenders and borrowers such as hedge funds, trading firms, treasuries, asset managers, and crypto banks seeking automated digital asset collateral management features. Capitalizing on the recent immaturity of the crypto debt market which led to the financial distresses of market leaders, CLST is effectively automating bilateral price negotiation and settlement for the unsecured and collateralized short-term debt market. With a large number of institutions participating in the network after soft launching in early 2022, CLST is going live with a wide market version of the application later this year.

“CLST sits at the nexus of the crypto asset short-term debt market and traditional financial market. In tandem with our world class investors and partners, we are establishing a market for stablecoins, digital assets, fiat, and beyond –  the ‘new money,’” said Michael Guzik, founder and CEO of CLST. “With the new funding, CLST will bolster its peer-to-peer infrastructure through increased operational and market expansion, ultimately creating an ease of lending that has not yet been made possible between institutional entities, until now.”

“With the current market environment exposing points of failure, it is clear that the crypto industry needs a better way to manage liquidity and counterparty risk as it continues to mature,” said Leeor Groen, Director at Spartan Group. “We are glad to back the CLST team as they launch the leading platform to facilitate both institutional borrowing and lending as well as treasury management solutions for digital asset market participants.”

The absence of counterparty risk assessment has also plagued the lending industry, prohibiting sophisticated parties from participating in a lucrative sector of the industry. Currently, lenders have limited visibility over a borrower’s trading risk, while borrowers have no oversight over the collateral deposited to obtain loans. To mitigate this roadblock, CLST provides “one click” financial data sharing and collateral management processes so that lenders and borrowers can accurately and efficiently assess their relationship pre-trade and collateral value post-trade.

CLST addresses the requirements of any principal and agent lender willing to automate the entire loan management process. Features such as electronic quotation, negotiation, wallet to wallet transaction, collateral management, and transaction reporting enable any trade participant to engage in short-term debt markets. The inherent lack of infrastructure to connect lenders and borrowers hinders institutional adoption and depth of liquidity. This is why automation and security in collateral management, combined with counterparty risk assessment, are key pillars of CLST. 

To learn more about CLST, please visit clst.com. 

Find out more on www.clst.com

Amber Group executes the world’s first crypto borrow transaction on CLST Markets

CLST Markets, an institutional-only lending and borrowing venue for stablecoins and crypto assets, has successfully facilitated an uncollateralized multi-million USDC stablecoin loan executed by Amber Group for the first time today. The fixed-term transaction was executed in the form of the first electronic promissory note for a stablecoin issued on the Algorand Blockchain.

Swiss-based FinTech company CLST led the successful transaction between Amber Group and an undisclosed counterparty. The underlying asset, a USDC stablecoin issued on the Algorand Blockchain (commonly referred to USDCa), was settled Peer-to-Peer and is based on an electronic promissory note (eNote), a technology provided by FQX which is seamlessly integrated into CLST. The multi-million USDC stablecoin loan was borrowed by Amber Group at a Fixed Term and with a contract duration of less than a year.

An eNoteTM is an unconditional promise to pay a specific sum to another party at a specific future date and can be modularly structured to fit any financing purpose. The eNoteTM is based on blockchain technology and can be easily transferred to any third party (i.e. an investor). When compared to other financing tools, eNotesTM excel through their modularity and global transferability, based on a standardized legal framework. Single eNotesTM are stored as NFTs on a blockchain. By issuing multiple eNotesTM, an issuer can obtain financing in a way comparable to commercial papers.

The uncollateralized transaction marks a significant milestone in institutional crypto asset lending by solving the problem of over-collateralization. Borrowers are routinely forced to pledge an amount of collateral that exceeds the value of the loan to mitigate the risk of cryptocurrency price fluctuations. This impediment is holding back the development of borrowing and lending in the crypto asset industry.

Overcoming this obstacle, whilst keeping risk at manageable levels, will finally allow institutions to unlock the full potential of a maturing short-term debt market as TradFi and DeFi converge.

Counterparty risk is mitigated by the innovative use of electronic promissory notes, a tried and tested method of providing lenders with a globally enforceable legal provision in the event of loan defaults.

Lack of institutional-grade infrastructure in lending and borrowing

“Currently, the institutional short-term debt market for stablecoins and crypto assets is heavily underserved due to a lack of large-scale lending and borrowing infrastructure that reduces counterparty and DeFi protocol risks. We are doubling down on the vision to connect every institution, from market makers, to treasuries, foundations, family offices or hedge funds, through a single communications venue,” says Michael Guzik, Founder and CEO of CLST.

“As a leading digital asset platform, Amber Group helps its clients to access liquidity, earn yield, and manage risk across crypto assets. As an institution with a global footprint, access to broad networks of lenders and borrowers, are therefore essential to Amber’s trading activities and liquidity management. Michael and the team behind CLST will make uncollateralized lending and borrowing

more efficient through the aggregation of deal flow and we are excited to be part of this global network at the very beginning of a new future for crypto assets in the market,” says Francesco Adiliberti, Managing Director for Europe at Amber Group.

About CLST

CLST is the institutional communications venue to lend or borrow stablecoins and crypto assets, automating multi-dealer price negotiation and price matching for institutional traders. CLST Markets integrates next generation products such as “Request-for Quote” (RFQ), “Fixed Term”, “Call Money”, institutional DeFi protocols, blockchain-based electronic promissory notes and wallet connectivity for automated settlements. CLST aims to resolve market uncertainties and scaling issues in uncollateralized and collateralized lending and borrowing of stablecoins and crypto assets. For more information, please visit www.clst.com

*Disclaimer: CLST borrowing and lending capabilities and products of stablecoins and crypto assets are not yet available in the United States

About Amber Group

Amber Group is a leading digital asset platform operating globally with offices in Asia, Europe, and the Americas. The firm provides a full range of digital asset services spanning investing, financing, and trading. Amber is backed by prominent investors including Sequoia Capital, Tiger Global Management, Paradigm, and Coinbase Ventures. For more information, please visit www.ambergroup.io

About FQX

FQX is a born-global start-up headquartered in Zurich, Switzerland. FQX is building the global debt infrastructure for the future of finance using blockchain technology. FQX employs more than 20 people in Europe & Asia. FQX has garnered attention in 2021 by winning the Swiss Fintech and the Fintech Germany Awards in its respective categories. FQX is backed by notable Fintech investors, among them SIX Fintech Ventures & Earlybird VC.

For more information, please visit enotes.tech

Aleph Zero joins CLST to explore Treasury Management and liquidity provisioning

Swiss-based FinTech companies CLST and Aleph Zero have announced a partnership to enhance lending and borrowing of specific digital currencies in countries where the new financial practice is approved.

The partnership will explore optimal management of Aleph Zero Foundation’s treasuries, tap into liquidity provisioning of the protocol’s native token AZERO and facilitate the institutional adoption of stablecoins which will be issued on the Aleph Zero protocol. The companies’ founders say that the partnership will enhance liquidity management to achieve efficient price discovery.

“Through our network, Aleph Zero has been able to engage with the world’s leading liquidity providers across key geographic markets,” said Michael Guzik, the founder and CEO of Zurich-based CLST. “By supplying AZERO to tier 1 institutions in the crypto asset space, we believe this is a game-changer to match supply with demand of AZERO and deploy liquidity efficiently.”

Prior to creating CLST, Guzik was the youngest Head of blockchain at PwC, and previously held various appointments leading blockchain-based ventures with a focus on FinTech. He led Primary Markets at Lykke, advised the Swiss Stock Exchange on their “Digital Asset Exchange” infrastructure and served as a Partner at Blockchain Valley Ventures. He also founded KORE Technologies, one of the leading infrastructure providers for Digital Assets. “New Money Markets are key to institutional adoption,” Guzik declares.

Among trading and payments, institutional capital markets are the fundamental building block for the mass adoption of stablecoins and crypto assets. A particular field is short-term debt markets, commonly known as institutional lending and borrowing with short-term durations. Through CLST Markets, issuers of such assets are able to tap into an institutional market and build liquidity among the world’s biggest hedge funds, exchanges, proprietary trading firms, asset managers, crypto banks and foundations.

“CLST aims to connect lenders and borrowers directly by creating an automatic bilateral price negotiation and settlement layer for institutional users,” said Antoni Zolciak, co-founder of Aleph Zero. “Unlocking liquidity is a crucial component of building a successful ecosystem — regardless of the short-term market sentiment. We’re excited to form a relationship with CLST and have full confidence in their team’s capabilities.”

Guzik says that building highly complex blockchain-based infrastructure requires a lot of talent, time and attention. He describes driving end-user adoption “a mammoth task.”

“Liquidity and institutional adoption on token level require completely different skill sets and networks,” Guzik adds. “As an institutional lending and borrowing venue, we naturally work with the largest players to bring together all the partners necessary for token issuers to succeed.”

About ALEPH ZERO
Aleph Zero Foundation is a non-profit foundation based in Zug, Switzerland, where it oversees the development of Aleph Zero blockchain. Its novel architecture is based on Aleph BFT, a DAG-based consensus protocol that has been peer-reviewed for design correctness. Its enterprise-ready, high-performance blockchain platform presents a novel, Directed Acyclic Graph (DAG)-based consensus protocol that has been peer-reviewed and presented at an ACM conference. To date, Aleph Zero has raised $15m for continued development, integrating with the Substrate stack and expanding its team. This year Aleph Zero plans to enable privacy-enhancing features based on secure multi-party computation research and zero-knowledge proofs. For more information, please visit: 
https://alephzero.org.

About CLST
Based in Zurich, CLST is the institutional gateway to lend or borrow stablecoins and crypto assets, automating bilateral price negotiation and price matching for institutional traders. CLST Markets integrates next generation products such as “Request-for Quote” (RFQ), “Fixed Term,” “Call Money,” institutional DeFi protocols, blockchain-based electronic promissory notes and wallet connectivity for automated settlements. CLST aims to resolve market uncertainties and scaling issues in unsecured lending and borrowing of crypto assets, while facilitating institutional adoption of stablecoins and crypto assets. For more information, please visit: 
https://clst.com.