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Real-world asset tokenisation is moving mainstream: Global Digital Finance

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New global research from industry association Global Digital Finance (GDF) shows most major financial institutions already handle real-world digital assets as tokenisation moves from being an innovation to a part of the mainstream.

Its study with finance firms in the US, Asia, Europe and the Middle East responsible for more than USD221.75 billion assets under management found 91 per cent handle real world digital assets, such as digital or tokenised securities or commodities and those who have not done so plan to in the future, with 100 per cent respondents intending on doing so if they do not already.

The 91 per cent are most likely to have handled tokenised corporate debt, alternative funds and sovereign debt, the research by GDF, which is focused on accelerating digital finance through the adoption of best practices and standards and engagement with regulators and policymakers, found.

Nearly nine out of 10 (87 per cent) questioned said they plan to use deposit tokens or Central Bank Digital Currencies (CBDCs). Currently firms rely on other cash leg solutions, with 57 per cent of firms deploying stablecoins and 66 per cent deploying proprietary coins to on and off ramp.

The research highlights a movement in RWA tokenisation from PoC to production which echoes comments earlier this year from Larry Fink, the CEO of BlackRock that the “next step going forward will be the tokenisation of financial assets.”

Madeleine Boys, Head of Programmes and Innovation at GDF said: “Tokenisation is rapidly moving from being an interesting innovation to becoming part and parcel of financial institutions’ digitisation strategies, and McKinsey estimates that around USD120 billion is already tokenised in the form of stablecoins.

The research shows that the vast majority of major financial institutions questioned are already handling tokenised real-world assets and all intend to do so, underlining the extent to which organisations are engaging with the sector.”

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