Osborne Clarke assisted and advised ILIUM S.A.S, one of the few European mining pool operator directly competing with American and Chinese players, to obtain its DASP registration (E2022-48) with the Financial Markets Authority (“Autorité des marches financiers” « AMF ») and the French Prudential Supervision and Resolution Authority (“Autorité de contrôle prudentiel et de résolution” « ACPR »).
ILIUM is a technological firm based in Metz with 23 employees. As part of its mining and stalking activities, the AMF and ACPR granted registration for its services of digital asset custody and exchange of digital assets against other digital assets.
Indeed, the mining and staking activities allow to secure blockchain transactions through a consensus mechanism (e.g. the Bitcoin blockchain uses the proof of work and Ethereum blockchain uses the proof of stake). Actors allowing the securitization are called miners (for mining operations) or validators (for staking), they make available their computing powers or the lock of their assets respectively.
ILIUM thus becomes the first DASP, in Europe and worldwide, to carry out a regulated mining pool platform called Cruxpool. Julien Gourlet, CEO and founder of ILIUM stated that : "It is a real pride and great honor for ILIUM and its employees to be registered as a DASP. The trust shown by the Financial Markets Authority and the Prudential Supervision and Resolution Authority shows a strong will to promote the French and European blockchain ecosystem in an increasingly competitive international market. Thanks to the regulators’ support and collaboration, it is now possible for us to build a healthy environment that is fully integrated among ever more innovative approaches."
Karima Lachgar, partner at Osborne Clarke, added: "The registration of ILIUM and its Cruxpool platform represents a major asset for the competitiveness and attractiveness of France as well as a stake for the European sovereignty. Mining pools are mainly located in the United States and China (despite a ban imposed on Chinese mining) and indeed the validation and security of blockchain transactions are strategic activities with strong geopolitical stakes. Having a mining pool platform in France, and furthermore a regulated one, is a real opportunity.”
As part of its DASP registration process, ILIUM was advised by Karima Lachgar (partner) and Maia Steffan (mid-associate) on the negotiations and exchanges with the competent authorities and the drafting of the registration file (programme of operations, digital asset selection procedures, legal qualification of activities), on the legal and regulatory review of the anti-money laundering and combating the financing of terrorism ("AML/CFT") procedure, and the contracting with the partners and Olivier Laurette (Outsider C) for the operational implementation of the AML/CFT procedure (assistance for the determination of risk matrices and risk scorings for example) as well as introductions with service providers operating transactional analysis tools (OATs) and the training of the executive managers.