Keon Foundation aims to innovate a gateway to DeFi protocols to bridge the gap between digital and traditional asset management by leveraging secure and scalable blockchain technology

The directors today announced the inception of the Keon Foundation Ltd. (the "Foundation”) which will serve as the virtual asset service provider (VASP) for the Keon Finance Ecosystem (“Keon”) and will provide initial development, governance, and compliance for Keon.

The Foundation will initially focus on the development of a low transaction cost decentralized exchange, KeonX, and related Keon liquidity farms as well as the launch of KeonFi, which will be a marketplace where investors can discover and subscribe to investment strategies on a non-custodial basis. “By utilizing institutional, low transaction fee blockchains and launching this effort as a non-profit, we will be able to provide investors with the lowest-cost DEX in the market and better attract talented investment managers and developers to grow the Keon ecosystem,” stated Kunall Parmar, a Foundation director.

Phase 2 products include a derivatives DEX (KeonXD), IDO LaunchPad, Farm Auctions and the Keon NFT marketplace, each of which will integrate with the Keon Finance Ecosystem. Once the software is developed, the Foundation intends to seek a digital assets business license in Bermuda to enable users to access the products and services.

“While there are many DeFi products and decentralized exchanges (DEXs), very few are regulated because following applicable local regulation and adhering to Financial Action Task Force (FATF) recommendations is difficult and costly, therefore requiring scale and sophistication,” explained Lawrence Newhook, a founding director of the Foundation. “Anyone with decent development skills can spin up a DEX on some blockchain, but the real opportunity in DeFi is with institutional investors. Having developed the alternatives program and traded for a large pension plan, I can tell you that no institutional investor is going to participate on some unregulated DEX operating in the shadows,” continued Mr. Newhook.

We see a tremendous opportunity to utilize the same underlying blockchain and automated market maker (AMM) technologies of DeFi with traditional assets... That's what's most exciting to us

Rahul Parmar

“Coming from traditional asset management, we are used to working in regulated environments,” noted Nicole Biernat, a Foundation director and Goldman Sachs alum. “Bringing DeFi technologies to regulated markets will open the door for institutional adoption and lead to a paradigm shift in asset management. This is the future of investing, and we are at the vanguard of it,” Ms. Biernat asserted.

Natalie Neto, Partner at Walkers (Bermuda) Limited, which acts for the Foundation, states "Bermuda is a natural fit for the Foundation and its ambitions, with the ability to develop the software and seek regulation under the Digital Assets Business Act, 2018 which offers certainty with respect to the specified digital assets business activities that require a license. We look forward to working with the Foundation as it launches the protocol and develops its unique VASP solution."

While initial products and investment strategies will focus on digital assets, Keon is also expected to facilitate non-digitally native assets and strategies in later releases. “We see a tremendous opportunity to utilize the same underlying blockchain and automated market maker (AMM) technologies of DeFi with traditional assets. We can apply KeonFi to non-custodial management of investment strategies consisting of tokenized equities, fixed income or commodities and also create virtual funds of tokenized real-world assets – that’s what’s most exciting to us,” added Rahul Parmar, Foundation director.