Overstock’s CEO launches new trading platform and token, tZero

Few mainstream business leaders have taken to the blockchain quite like Patrick Byrne. The founder of Overstock.com has been accepting Bitcoin since 2014 and has been talking about disrupting the payments world with transparent, low-cost, and sane blockchain-based systems. With tZero, he just started his roll toward full blockchain adoption.

TZero, at its core, is a SEC-regulated alternative trading system (ATS). Rather than depending on broker dealers to buy and sell securities, tZero works, in theory, like money sender Transferwise by matching buyers and sellers in a dark pool. The goal is to create an alternative to the NASDAQ with a ledger that is open, transparent, and immutable.

“I think it’s a historic event. We’re opening a new type of capital market,” Byrne told Coindesk.

Byrne said the company was also launching a token sale to help seed the platform. The tokens, like poker chips, will be used to buy and sell on the platform and Byrne said the pre-sale is vastly oversubscribed.

Byrne is convinced that this is the future. He is selling the Overstock retail business and will focus primarily on tZero and a new partnership, De Soto Inc., aimed at bringing millions around the world out of poverty by digitizing the informal ledgers used by those outside of traditional banking and business ecosystems.

TZero is the first SEC regulated crypto ATS to see the light of day and Byrne wants to reduce the bad actors and bag actions traditionally associated with cryptocurrency in general and token sales in particular. The company will only sell initial tokens to accredited investors or offshore buyers but they expect to offer public sales as well.