Well, this is a big deal in that it gives a glimpse into what is going on in the digitization of asset classes. OneGram, which is an Islamic financial services and technology firm, is teaming up with a Dubai based-online gold trading platform to create a gold backed digital currency. One token=one gram of gold. They will also open a huge vault to store physical gold in the Dubai airport. Since they are targeting the Islamic market everything will be compliant with Sharia law. Oh, did I mention they are starting with $500M? WOW!
“Islamic financial services and technology company OneGram is partnering with GoldGuard, a Dubai-based online gold trading platform, that is building one of world’s largest gold vaults inside the Dubai Airport Free Zone, to create the first completely “gold-backed digital currency” globally. Each token represents a gram of gold and redeemable.
With Sharia scholars on OneGram’s board it ensures that the company is fully compliant with Islamic finance requirements. Advisers listed include amongst others Sheikh Abdulkader Amor, CEO of Al Maali Consulting Group and an Islamic financial adviser, Adam Richard, CEO of Volt Markets, and founder of the Houston Bitcoin Meetup.
Currently the Islamic finance sector is responsible for managing around 1% of global GDP and growing at nearly 20% per year.
With there being an estimated 1.8 billion (bn) Muslims worldwide according to a study in 2015 – equating to around a quarter of the global population of c.7.5bn today – OneGram is seen as a “Sharia-compliant method” for them to keep gold in a digital format that is both secure and digitally transferable, including across borders.
And, given that the number of Muslims in the world is expected to grow to 2.2bn by 2030, the new joint venture between OneGram and GoldGuard was being outlined today at The Ritz-Carlton, Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC), in terms of its impact on “opening the doors for cryptocurrency trading to the Islamic world…”