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Russia’s Sberbank to launch first ICO

Russia's SberbankRussian bank Sberbank and the National Settlement Depository are expected to launch the country’s first official Initial Coin Offering (ICO) using the Bank of Russia’s regulatory sandbox. Sberbank CIB, the investment banking arm of the state-owned Sberbank, and NRD, which is part of the Moscow Stock Exchange Group, are now finalizing plans with the central bank to launch the project by the end of summer 2018. Sberbank CIB’s head Igor Bulantsev said that the bank considers the Russian ICO market to be highly promising, emphasizing that many of the bank’s clients are interested in this new way of fundraising. The experimental ICO proceeds will reportedly be used to launch new tokenized online services by Level One, a company that runs the largest commercial lecture hall in Moscow. The Bank of Russia announced the launch of its regulatory sandbox in mid-April this year, offering Russian fintech companies the chance to test new technologies without the risk of violating domestic law.

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