With credit institutions still reluctant to provide financing to start-ups, many companies are looking for new ways to raise funds. Others are exploring ways to integrate new technology such as Distributed Ledger Technology (DLT), Blockchain and SmartContracts into their existing business models. Either way, initial coin offerings (ICO) or initial token offerings (ITO) are currently trending.

We prepared an overview of the local regulations in Bulgaria, Hungary and Poland for you.

To read about the Austrian, Slovenian and Croatian legal framework for cryptocurrencies, click here.

Is trading individual tokens/coins considered a regulated activity?

Bulgaria | Depending on their exact terms & conditions, tokens issued by start-ups or as a financing instrument might constitute (a) financial instruments within the meaning of MiFID II or (ii) securities within the meaning of the Prospectus Directive. Trading in such instruments could hence be subject to banking licensing requirements. Investment services relating to such instruments may be regulated services under MiFID II.

Hungary | To the extent that coins/tokens are considered as securities, their trading will be a regulated activity.

Poland | To the extent that coins/tokens are considered as securities, their trading will be a regulated activity (i.e. securities trading). We cannot exclude that where tokens express or represent regulated assets, the trading of such assets will eventually be deemed a regulated activity subject to licensing or other regulatory treatment.

Have there been ICOs/ITOs in your jurisdiction? If yes, is the volume known?

Bulgaria | Yes. There have been a few successful ICOs in Bulgaria. Some of the most successful were for the companies Aeternity (raising USD 35 million), AdEx (raising USD 12 million), and Lockchain (ICO still active). There are no official statistics on the number of ICOs in Bulgaria.

Hungary | We are not aware of such offerings.

Poland | Yes. An ICO is planned by computer game developer Macro Games. The volume will be around PLN 10 million (EUR 2.4 million).

Read the whole ICO guide and all answers for Austria, Croatia and Slovenia here.

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.