Cryptocurrency

Aptos CEO Appointed to CFTC’s Digital Asset Group

Mo Shaikh, CEO of Aptos Labs, has joined the Digital Asset Markets Subcommittee, a group managed by the Commodities Futures Trading Commission’s (CFTC) Global Markets Advisory Committee (GMAC), according to a recent report.

Mo Shaikh has consulted the World Economic Forum on its global blockchain strategy, including central bank digital currencies (CBDCs).

Founded in 1998, the subcommittee advises the CFTC on regulations related to digital assets. The group focuses on developing a clear, consensus-driven approach to classifying digital assets and their functions. It aims to promote innovation, identify and address risk considerations, and enable adequate regulatory understanding.

Blockchain Is Blowing Up!

The latest appointment could strengthen Aptos’ influence in the cryptocurrency sector. Previously, the subcommittee had welcomed prominent members, including representatives from BlackRock, Polygon Labs, and Uniswap Labs.

Before joining the CFTC’s Digital Assets Subcommittee, Shaikh led blockchain strategic partnerships for Novi, Facebook’s wallet, and consulted the World Economic Forum on its global blockchain strategy, including central bank digital currencies (CBDCs).

In addition, Aptos CEO consulted sovereign wealth funds, energy, and telecom companies with BCG’s private equity practice.

Shaikh’s participation can contribute to the subcommittee’s efforts to develop clear and effective digital asset regulations. Moreover, the CFTC can benefit from a more open line of communication with key industry players.

His involvement can allow the Commission to clearly communicate regulatory expectations and receive feedback from the industry on the proposed rules.

The appointment comes after the U.S. House of Representatives passed the Financial Innovation and Technology for the 21st Century Act (FIT21) on May 22.

One of the key highlights of FIT21 is that digital assets will be regulated by either the SEC or the CFTC, depending on the decentralization of their underlying networks or projects. This has been one of the most remarkable developments since the digital asset industry had likely been under the SEC’s oversight.

Positive Developments for Aptos

Not only the latest appointment can benefit the CFTC, but it can also help the Aptos blockchain.

“Not only do we represent L1s, but we also represent a lot of the projects in the Web3 space — and [are] happy to be a voice for them along the way,” Shaikh noted.

Aptos utilizes Move, a programming language designed for Diem (Facebook’s abandoned blockchain project). This language is believed to be efficient and secure. The main goal of the Aptos blockchain is to process transactions faster than Ethereum, the current leader in the space.

Other blockchain projects, like Sui, which has roots in Diem technology, also emphasize transaction speed as a key advantage.

Aptos Labs has secured $400 million from well-respected venture capital firms. Based on a recent funding round, the company is valued at over $4 billion.

In April this year, Aptos Labs announced a strategic partnership with tech giant Microsoft. This collaboration leverages Microsoft’s Azure cloud computing platform and the Azure OpenAI language model to support intelligent applications.

As part of the deal, Azure OpenAI will power Aptos Ascend, a digital asset management platform designed for financial institutions.

According to the announcement, Aptos Ascend aims to achieve two key goals. Firstly, it seeks to expand access to decentralized finance (DeFi) for institutional capital through the Aptos network. Secondly, it aims to increase the global liquidity of tokenized real-world assets (RWAs).

This partnership isn’t the first foray for Aptos Labs and Microsoft into the Web3 space. In August 2023, the two companies joined forces to develop a new AI-powered blockchain solution. This earlier initiative focused on advancing digital payments, tokenization, and the intersection of AI and Web3.

Apart from Microsoft, Aptos Labs also collaborated with many other big names with relevant expertise to accompany the development of Aptos Ascend, including Brevan Howard, SK Telecom, and Boston Consulting Group (BCG).

The post Aptos CEO Appointed to CFTC’s Digital Asset Group appeared first on Blockonomi.

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