GFSC clears Valereum’s acquisition of Gibraltar Stock Exchange
The Gibraltar Financial Services Commission has cleared Valereum’s acquisition of the Gibraltar Stock Exchange [GSX], in a move that could open new trade opportunities with Europe, the Middle East, Africa and India.
The decision was announced hours before the Gibraltar Government hosts its traditional Gibraltar Day events in London, including a lunch at the Guildhall bringing together financial services executives from the City and the Rock.
Richard Poulden, the chairman of Valereum, said Gibraltar’s leading role in regulating the crypto space, alongside its established English-language legal system, were key factors attracting Valereum to the Rock.
And he sketched out ambitious plans for the stock exchange going forward, including establishing the foundation of a new international network headquartered in Gibraltar.
The future focus of the GSX will be to expand the access to European capital for early stage and small-cap companies in the Middle East, India and Africa where there is “a huge opportunity to empower entrepreneurs” across the region.
“It is auspicious to be announcing this on the day of the Gibraltar Financial Services Lunch in London,” he said.
“We have ambitious plans for the GSX and for Valereum linking the fiat and digital worlds.”
“All our expansion plans will be fully regulated in the environments in which we plan to operate.”
“The GSX will harness proven exchange technology from established providers and will be updated with full front to back trading and clearing functionality on a significant scale and expandability.”
“Just as The Rock of Gibraltar has been a physical port for centuries, GSX will encourage a new generation of companies and assets to see Gibraltar as a virtual node in financial trade.”
“In time we will seek an international listing for the Valereum group as we see this as a compelling investment proposition.”
Speaking on Sky News ahead of the lunch, Chief Minister Fabian Picardo said Gibraltar had been at the forefront of regulating the crypto world.
“What we are is an example of regulation in this new space which I think the rest of the world will want to look at and learn from,” he said.
“That's why I think Gibraltar s doing something which is very important in regulating this space, in giving people confidence that a regulated space is better than an unregulated space in respect of crypto and the future.”
Mr Picardo acknowledged the downturn in the crypto markets this year, where the value of popular digital currencies has slumped.
He said that should not deter from efforts to establish a regulatory framework that would provide protection for investors going forward.
“I think that it's important that people who want to invest in this space are able to do so in a way that is safe and in a way that is not relegated to the rules of the wild west, with might being right simply because somebody's pocket may be deeper than another,” he said.
“And that's what we're doing, we're creating a regulatory space which will ensure that the dealings in digital assets are as protected as you might expect in physical assets.”
“This is a work in progress, of course we're not finished yet, but we're very pleased to be prime movers in that respect.”
Valereum’s acquisition of GSX is now subject only to conventional conditions pertaining to regulatory and working capital as required, the company said.
Valereum did not reveal the price of the deal, which it expects to complete in the first quarter of 2023.