Zurich, Switzerland - Zurich-based FQX secures $4.7M in seed funding to scale their revolutionary eNote™ infrastructure. Earlybird led the round with participation of SIX Fintech Ventures, the non-strategic corporate venture arm of SIX, and the unicorn founder Carsten Thoma.
FQX is radically facilitating trade finance & money markets by using eNote™ , a disruptive short-term financing & payment instrument. In essence, an eNote™ is an unconditional promise to pay a specific sum to another party at a specific future date. The eNote™ is based on Blockchain technology and can be flexibly sold and transferred to any third party (i.e. an investor). When compared to other financing options, eNote™ as negotiable instruments outperform through their financial steering capabilities and global transferability.
eNote™ are based on the globally proven, formerly paper-based “promissory notes”. The enforcement regime applicable to eNote™ is recognized in over 165 countries. FQX is the first market-ready solution for eNote™ built on a banking-grade Blockchain (Swiss Trust Chain) with a unique, patent-pending authentication mechanism (based on regulated and qualified electronic signatures provided by Swisscom). The eNote™ infrastructure can be integrated into financing platforms of banks and Fintechs, allowing their customers to benefit from the entire eNote™ lifecycle from issuance to settlement.
Just two years ago, eNote™ were not on the agenda of most finance players. Since then, leading nations such as Singapore, the UK, the US, and the UAE (supported by UNCITRAL, ICC, BAFT and ITFA), have made a Blockchain-based solution for trade finance and money markets a top priority, enacting or initiating legislations that are supposed to govern electronic promissory notes. FQX, with its live and running eNote™ infrastructure, is the leading tech company at the epicentre of a pivotal and exponentially growing market.
Frank Wendt, FQX’s Chairman & Co-Founder comments: “As a team, we’re immensely proud to have built an eNote™ technology infrastructure we envisaged two years ago that is now uniquely positioned to transform trade finance and money markets. This funding enables us to scale our transaction volume over the years to come.”
Oswald Kuyler, Head of the Digital Standards Initiative at ICC commented: “Closing the trade finance gap and enabling SMEs is a top priority of the ICC. Electronic promissory notes as offered by the FQX eNote™ infrastructure is a fantastic example of how new business models and technology can bridge the trade finance gap.”
Dr. Christian Nagel, Co-Founder and Partner of Earlybird adds: “Short-term financing markets are widely fragmented and inefficient today, with $65tn+ in annual transaction volumes globally. The eNote by FQX is a truly disruptive instrument to untap liquidity in those markets. As a first-mover, FQX has the potential to become the leading tech infrastructure and set the de-facto standard for eNotes globally. We are very excited to join their journey early on.”
About the FQX team:
In 2019, FQX was founded by Frank Wendt, Benedikt Schuppli, Dr. des. Stephan D. Meyer & Dr. Philipp von Randow. The team uniquely blends multiple strengths: Frank brings expertise in supply chain finance, after grappling with flaws seen in the fragmented solutions of a US-based supply chain finance unicorn. He recognised that if the old instrument of the promissory note could overcome written form requirements, it would be the perfect financing & payment instrument. Benedikt complemented the analyses with profound startup know-how, crypto and legaltech sector experience, plus a focus on computing languages for contracts. Stephan with his PhD in tokenization of assets defined the components of the unique eNote™ infrastructure; he is a university lecturer on Blockchain & law and has worked for a top-tier Swiss fintech law firm – structuring global DLT projects that translated legal requirements to technical solutions. Philipp, a globally renowned financing lawyer and co-founder of Latham & Watkins’ Frankfurt and Middle East offices, completes the group. He designed a sophisticated, scalable legal basis that ensures FQX’s legal framework is reliable and secure.
FQX is also a member of BAFT, the Bankers Association for Finance and Trade as well as ITFA, The International Trade and Forfaiting Association.
Earlybird is a venture capital investor focused on European technology companies. Founded in 1997, Earlybird invests in all growth and development phases of a company. Amongst the most experienced venture investors in Europe, Earlybird offers its portfolio companies not only financial resources, but also strategic and operational support as well as access to an international network and capital markets. Earlybird manages different funds with focuses on digital technologies in Eastern and Western Europe as well as health technologies. With EUR 1.5 billion under management, eight IPOs and 30 trade sales, Earlybird is one of the most successful venture capital firms in Europe.