The Malta Independent 26 May 2024, Sunday
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UoM to start offering Blockchain degree; civil servants to be trained in the field - Schembri

Julian Bonnici Tuesday, 10 July 2018, 17:14 Last update: about 7 years ago

The University of Malta will start offering a specialised degree in the field of blockchain and cryptocurrencies as of October of this year, with a Blockchain Lab also being set up in the near future with the goal of training civil servants in the field, Parliamentary Secretary Silvio Schembri has announced.

In an interview with Net News last Sunday, PN Leader Adrian Delia criticised the government for not doing enough to ensure that younger generations are given the tools to be able to thrive within the industry. The government initiative formed part of the budget announced last October.


Schembri was speaking at the launch of Palladium, a Malta-based blockchain company and the world's first fully regulated Initial Convertible Coin Offering (ICCO).

The issuance of a tokenised convertible warrant - which is regulated by a prospectus approved by the Malta Financial Services Authority (MFSA) and subject to stringent EU rules - will give investors the right to convert the tokens into shares of Palladium three years after the issue date.

Schembri said that the newly regulated sector will complement the other financial services industries around the island, with the country determined to remain at the forefront of innovation in the field by anticipating changes in this fast-developing sector.

Prof. Paolo Catalfamo, founder and chairman of Palladium, said: "We expect this project, which will create more than 100 job opportunities, to be a historic landmark and to bridge the gap between traditional financial services and cryptocurrencies."

He explained that the Palladium platform was a revolutionary solution to the biggest obstacles to widespread crypto adoption: cumbersome management of cryptocurrencies and regulatory uncertainty surrounding their use.

"This ICCO is one of the most unique investment opportunities in the blockchain world. Institutional investors recognise the scale of the opportunity, but the lack of regulation has kept them watching from the sidelines. Palladium's solution will change this. Cutting-edge blockchain technology will allow customers to use regulation-compliant, multi-asset accounts to manage fiat and cryptocurrencies," he added.

The fundraising target is €150 million and the pre-sale of Palladium tokens starts today. The offering period for subscription of the tokenized securities will run from July 25 to September 30.

Proceeds will be used to support the three core blocks of Palladium's solution: 50 per cent will go towards the acquisition of a controlling interest in a European bank; 35 per cent into the formation of a regulated crypto exchange and the development of a clearing and settlement blockchain platform; and 15 per cent into strategic investments in financial services and blockchain companies complementing Palladium's business.

Palladium's main shareholders are Investar Holding (85 per cent) and Unikrn (15 per cent). Investar is a holding company fully owned by Prof. Paolo Catalfamo. Unikrn, founded by Rahul Sood, is based in Las Vegas and is a leader in eSports.






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