The blockchain investment arm of Overstock, Medici Ventures, has obtained a 5.1 percent equity stake in Bankorus, a blockchain banking startup.
Overstock announced the news March 11, saying that the blockchain platform of Bankorus enables institutions and individuals to “securely” buy, sell, lend, and store digital assets.
Medici Ventures Jonathan Johnson said, “The addition of Bankorus to Medici Ventures’ portfolio of companies will further our work in building the foundation of a blockchain-based technology stack for society.”
“Bankorus has built a revolutionary blockchain banking platform that dovetails nicely with Medici Ventures’ goals of eliminating middlemen, democratizing capital, and rehumanizing commerce by helping individuals access and control their own digital assets,” he added.
Established in 2013, Bankorus, which is based in Beijing, has embraced the goal to unlock over $60 trillion in traditional assets owned by high-net-worth individuals and shift it into cryptocurrencies. The company intends to turn and traditional and illiquid assets like art, real estate, bonds, and hedge funds into liquid digital assets over its security token marketplace.
The global portfolio of companies of Medici Ventures now has a total of 20 following the new acquisition.
Last December, Medici also acquired a 29.6 percent stake in Chainstone Labs, a digital securities firm, for around $3.6 million.
The security token marketplace of Medici, tZERO, was rolled out in January. Initially, the marketplace has its own tZERO Preferred (TZROP) token as the only listed asset. However, the trading volume was low and the token’s price dropped immediately after the launch.
Patrick Byrne, CEO of Overstock, recently said that he anticipated volumes to rise after the one year lock-up period of the token ends in August and the platform begins to offer services to retail investors. At present, tZERO is limited to accredited investors only.