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Why Switzerland for blockchain companies

Monday 26 November 2018

Switzerland’s heritage of decentralization and technological prowess provides the best launch pad for your blockchain project.


Leading jurisdiction for ICOs

The Swiss authorities are progressive, pragmatic and committed to building a blockchain-friendly regulatory framework. In February 2018, the national financial market authority, FINMA, became the first regulator in the world to publish clear guidelines on ICOs. The guidelines recognize the innovative potential of blockchain technology, clarify the application of financial market legislation in handling enquiries from ICO organizers and classify tokens issued during ICOs based on their economic function (payment, utility and asset tokens). In May 2018, the Geneva cantonal authorities released the very first guide dedicated to supporting ICO project promoters. The ICO guide specifies the VAT liability and general tax treatment of tokens and outlines the criteria to be met to gain the support of the cantonal authorities.

Starting a company with crypto

More than 60 companies have already used cryptocurrencies to either set up or inject fresh capital into their enterprise in Switzerland.

Forward-looking institutions

Home to leading international organizations and to the world’s most advanced blockchain ecosystem, Switzerland is the place to be for associations and global bodies involved in shaping the future of blockchain technology. These include the Crypto Valley Association, the Capital Markets and Technology Association, the Global Blockchain Business Council, the Swiss Association of Crypto Investors and the Swiss Blockchain Association.

SIX Digital Exchange

Switzerland’s stock exchange is building SIX Digital Exchange, the first market infrastructure in the world to offer a fully integrated trading, settlement and custody service for digital assets. The first services will be rolled out in mid-2019. They will provide a safe environment for issuing and trading digital assets, and enable the tokenization of existing securities and non-bankable assets to make previously untradeable assets tradeable.

By locating your company in Western Switzerland, you will gain access to a flourishing blockchain ecosystem comprised of supportive service providers, world-class education institutions and a dynamic business and start-up community.

Legal and banking solutions

Western Switzerland boasts a comprehensive network of blockchain-savvy service providers, from banks and law firms, to accounting, audit and tax experts. The GGBa works with a number of law firms including DLT Law, HDC, ID EST, Leax Avocats, Ochsner & Associés and Walder Wyss. It also collaborates with commercial and private banks offering services to blockchain clients.

A network of advisors

The GGBa relies on a pool of competent and experienced advisors and consultants, who are specialized in blockchain and DLT projects, as well as marketing and event planning. Among them are the eBusiness Institute, InnMind, Psion Finance and Swiss Crypto Advisors.

Innovation hubs and incubators

Western Switzerland’s innovation infrastructure supports the development of blockchain ventures from the very early stages. Bordier Finlab, Fongit, Fusion’s Blockchain Lab, InnoPeaks, and Y-Start offer seeding, incubation and acceleration programs to foster the growth of blockchain products and start-ups. At Coworking Neuchâtel, like-minded entrepreneurs can work and network in a blockchain-driven environment.

Academic and continuing education

The offering of higher education in Western Switzerland is of an exemplary standard, fostering talent and skills for innovation. As of January 2019, the University of Geneva and the CREA School will offer continuing education programs in blockchain and DLT. The Blockchain Lab of the HES-SO Valais/Wallis works on various research projects in the eHealth, eServices, and eEnergy sectors. The Center for Digital Trust (C4DT) combines EPFL’s renowned expertise in cybersecurity, sensitive data protection and blockchain and smart-contracting technology with the capabilities of 12 institutional and industrial partners. The Swiss Blockchain Winter School is organized jointly by EPFL, ETHZ, and IC3. It will be held in beautiful Interlaken during the week of February 10-15, 2019.

Successful peer companies

To date, 65 blockchain companies have chosen Western Switzerland as their home. They include: Alpine Mining, ARCATrust, Bancor, Bity, Cerealia, DAO.LINK, EverdreamSoft, Hardah, IBT, IndéNodes, Ipso Microelectronics, IPStock, Komgo, LakeDiamond, Ledgity, Maecenas, Metaco, Mt Pelerin, Orbinetwork, Peers Point, Pikcio, SecuTix, Serendipia, SICPA, SonoCoin, SwissBorg, Sysmosoft, Taurus Group, Tokenestate, Trecento, WeCan.Fund.

International and local events

Switzerland bustles with events and conferences to complement and enhance the day-to-day business of its dynamic blockchain community. The country regularly hosts internationally renowned blockchain events, such as the Blockchain Leadership Summit, the Crypto Finance Conference, the Crypto Summit, the CV Summit and the Geneva Annual Blockchain Congress. Informal meetups are organized all year round by Fusion, InnMind, the Western Switzerland Chapter of the Crypto Valley Association, and many others.

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