VTB sealed the first deal with digital financial assets in Russia


VTB Factoring, a subsidiary of Russia’s state-owned bank, reported the first major deal with digital financial assets. As part of the deal, the banking subsidiary acquired a tokenized debt from the engineering company Metrowagonmash, issued by the fintech platform Lighthouse.

Wednesday, June 29, VTB reported the agreement on its website, claiming that it is the first issuance and placement of digital financial assets secured by cash in the Russian Federation. In the announcement, the bank compares it to the issuance of short-term commercial bonds.

Anton Musatov, CEO at VTB Factoring, emphasized the potential of the new technology regarding the access of Russian companies to the finance needed for operational activities:

“In addition to the standard factoring procedure, [here] a customer would not necessarily have to sign a service contract to sell their debt group. The issuer’s readiness to token it and the factoring bank’s decision to acquire it. “

In June 2022 the largest Russian bank Sber announced its first operation with the digital financial assets (DFA) to take place in mid-July, after finally obtaining a license from the country’s central bank.

While current legislation on the DFA was put into force in 2020, in June 2022 the head of the Financial Market Committee of the lower house of the Russian parliament introduced a bill that would ban the use of DFA as a “monetary substitute”.

Related: Russia will include crypto in its tax code: This is what the rules might look like

In February 2022 VTB conducted the first successful attempt of the operation with “digital waste”, a project of a central bank digital currency (CBDC) of the Bank of Russia. Then, the bank announced its first purchase of DFAs against the digital ruble. Prior to the press time, there is no information on whether the said agreement was made by CBDC.