Sowa Labs, a subsidiary of Börse Stuttgart, the second-largest stock exchange in Germany has developed its own cryptocurrency trading app called Bison. This was made known via a press release on Friday, April 13, 2018. Börse Stuttgart acquired a 100 percent stake in the Ulm-based Sowa Labs in December 2018. Exact details of the deal remain unknown but there are reports that put the acquisition in millions of euros. Sowa Labs now functions as the fintech arm of Börse Stuttgart.
The Bison app will offer a platform for trading bitcoin, ether, ripple, and litecoin. Other cryptocurrency species are expected to be added, going forward. The app which will be made available in September 2018 will be free to download. A demo prototype version of the app is currently being shown at a Stuttgart exhibition fair. The developers plan to design the app to have both a German and an English user interface.
Speaking on the launch, Ulli Spankowski, the managing director of Sowa Labs said that the Bison app simplifies the cryptocurrency trading process. He also drew attention to the fact that it is the first crypto trading app to be backed by a traditional stock exchange. This he said, further adds credibility to the Bison platform.
Bison is expected to rival the likes of Robinhood, in offering zero trading fees. Early users of the platform also stand the chance to win many crypto prizes. The first 1,000 members of the app VIP list will stand a chance to win 3 BTC that has been donated to the prize pool. A few ether, litecoin, and ripple have also been donated to the prize pool.
There is also a feature of the app called cryptoradar, which is a social media tool. Cryptoradar is able to scan Twitter in search of trending cryptocurrency news stories. The cryptoradar tool is capable of aggregating up to 250,000 tweets in order to generate an approximate analysis of the current mood in the market. This report is made available to traders on the platform.
The Bison app development team want the app to deliver a seamless and straightforward cryptocurrency trading experience. Thus, they have tried to develop what they hope is a simplified user ID verification process. Part of the difficulty experienced in the crypto trading market comes when trying to navigate the sometimes complex identity verification steps on many crypto trading platforms. Governments around the world are enforcing stricter compliance to know-your-customer (KYC) and anti-money laundering (AML) regulations. Commenting on this issue, Ulli Spankowski said that:
“Bison also significantly reduces the complexity of registration and proof of identity. While the opening of a user account usually took several days, the use of BISON takes only a few minutes before it is released for trading.”
This move by Börse Stuttgart via its subsidiary, Sowa Labs is another example of the emerging trend of mainstream financial players entering the crypto market.