Deutsche Börse, a German marketplace operator, is partnering with Commerzbank to develop blockchain-based marketplaces for assets like art and real estate.
It’s part of the companies’ investment in a fintech firm called 360X. Deutsche Börse and Commerzbank plan to sell their first tokenized assets through the firm later this year.
It’s an opportune time for tokens of all shapes and sizes—where proper cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin and Ethereum have dominated the conversation for the past decade, other crypto assets (like NFTs, stock tokens, and more) are currently enjoying a moment in the sun.
NFTs are non-fungible tokens: digital collectibles on the blockchain, many of which are tied to image or video files. They’ve been selling for millions over the past few months, and opened up new ways to tokenize off-chain assets. NFTs generated over $2 billion in the first quarter of this year, as tweets, digital images, and GIFs were monetized through online NFT auction houses.
Commerzbank has made other investments in the world of blockchain tech (one of those is Curv, an app for storing crypto), but its analysts have been mostly down on Bitcoin, calling it a purely speculative asset.
Deutsche Börse has been slightly more involved—WisdomTree Investments, which is currently trying to get a Bitcoin ETF approved in the US, already has an ETP (exchange-traded product) listed on Deutsche Börse’s Frankfurt-based Xetra market.