IOTA launched a $100 million foundation in Abu Dhabi on Wednesday to accelerate the spread of its distributed ledger technology.
IOTA, a global technology network, inaugurated a $100 million foundation in Abu Dhabi on Wednesday to accelerate the expansion of its distributed ledger technology (DLT) in the Middle East, with the goal of assisting in the conversion of physical assets to digital assets, according to IOTA co-founder and Chairman Dominik Schiener.
DLT has similarities to blockchain, a cryptographic technology with hundreds of potential applications since its debut more than ten years ago. The investment will be funded using IOTA digital tokens.
The foundation adds another layer of support to a sector that has recently been contaminated by the failure of big market players such as FTX and the demise of Binance, previously the largest crypto exchange. Optimism has emerged, however, on the expectation that spot bitcoin exchange-traded funds (ETFs) will be approved by regulators soon.
The IOTA Ecosystem DLT Foundation is the first blockchain-focused organization to be certified by the Abu Dhabi Global Market (ADGM), the United Arab Emirates’ financial center, whose blockchain laws were finalized in early November.
“The market right now is being reshuffled, so we have a big opportunity to position ourselves by focusing on onboarding institutions and offering them to work on-chain because now it’s more feasible to do that in the UAE,” Schiener said in a phone interview.
Schiener stated that the foundation will be seeded with more than $100 million in IOTA tokens, which will be vested over the next four years.
IOTA tokens traded at around $0.17 on Tuesday, with a market value of around $524 million.
Schiener stated that the funds will be used to develop the IOTA network and expedite its expansion.
He also stated that IOTA will begin “tokenizing” assets, a process in which ownership rights in property or buildings are represented as digital tokens and kept on a blockchain. Tokens function similarly to digital certificates of ownership for practically any valuable asset.
According to Hamad Sayah Al Mazrouei, chief executive of the ADGM Registration Authority, by bringing IOTA to Abu Dhabi, the country hopes to position itself “as the leading jurisdiction for the blockchain industry.”
After its inception in 2015, IOTA was one of the fastest-growing networks, but its projects in Europe are hampered by regulatory uncertainties. It was founded in Germany and has ongoing blockchain projects with European government agencies.
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