First global securities exchange proactively integrating compliance checks to combat NFT market manipulation and support fractionalized or securities-type NFTs if need arises

NY, New York / ACCESSWIRE / March 9, 2022 / Upstream, a MERJ Exchange Market and first regulated securities exchange to offer non-fungible token “NFT” trading alongside digital securities is responding to news of potential incoming NFT market regulation with its innovative methodology capable of supporting NFTs as securities in the global market if the need ever arises. While Upstream isn’t treating NFTs as securities, the exchange has proactively integrated relevant investor protection measures found in regulated securities markets including Know Your Customer “KYC” and Anti-Money Laundering “AML” compliance checks to prevent market manipulation.

According to a Bloomberg report, The United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), led by Chairman Gary Gensler, is allegedly undertaking inquiries of NFT creators and platforms for potential securities violations, focusing on fractionalized NFTs and whether certain NFTs are being used to raise money like traditional securities. As of the date of this blog, the SEC has not confirmed the existence of the reported probe.

Upstream is the first securities exchange to offer both NFT and securities trading. If select NFTs were to be deemed securities, such as those with dividends, royalty streams, and fractionalized ownership, Upstream could support them directly alongside traditional NFTs without delay. As a MERJ Exchange Market, Upstream benefits from MERJ being an affiliate of the World Federation of Exchanges (WFE) adhering to the highest levels of investor protections, issuer disclosures and KYC/AML compliance.

A layer-2 Ethereum exchange, Upstream offers a simplified user journey with in-app wallet creation, streamlined compliance checks, and no gas fees charged to users which enables NFT creators to sell free, low-cost, or premium NFTs to fans of all levels who may participate using cash, credit cards, debit cards, PayPal and USDC stablecoin. Hybrid features and perks include “burn and replace” for stolen or lost NFTs; flexible payment options; and FDIC insurance for cash positions for traders.

“Most NFT platforms have moved faster than regulation, but we’ve always taken the approach that regulation was a “when” not an “if” for the multi-billion-dollar NFT market,” said Upstream Co-Founder and Horizon CEO Brian Collins. “As a regulated securities exchange, Upstream’s NFT market inherently meets U.S.-securities and bank-secrecy laws as standard practice for the global community. We’ve built our exchange to be adaptable with potential new policies, seamlessly integrating identity verification, AML, and copyright protection to safeguard NFT traders.”

“Upstream, along with our high-profile partners including Pitbull, Timbaland’s Beatclub Platform, and other media giants being announced in the coming weeks, has taken a proactive approach with our carbon neutral NFT market and are proud to offer a trusted beacon for groups across music, media, sports and entertainment to integrate NFTs into their companies marketing and revenue-building strategies without worrying about incoming regulation,” said Upstream Co-Founder and Horizon President Mark Elenowitz.
“The multibillion-dollar NFT market is inviting new participants in every day,” continued Upstream Co-Founder and Horizon President Mark Elenowitz. “We believe NFT marketplaces have a responsibility to protect these users which is why we’ve voluntarily integrated measures that will maintain a safe, fair, and accessible NFT ecosystem.”

By making NFTs easily accessible, affordable, and legally compliant, millions of fans can enjoy content from their favorite athletes, musicians, and entertainers through unique digital assets.

Interested NFT issuers or sponsors can reach Upstream at

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About Upstream

Upstream, a MERJ Exchange Market, is a regulated global stock exchange for digital securities. The exchange is powered by a carbon-neutral Ethereum layer-2 blockchain for NFTs and securities issuance with an NFT auction and securities matching engine. Users can safely trade NFTs, digital securities, fractionalized securities, IPOs, crowdfunded companies, U.S. & Int’l. equities, and celebrity ventures: Interested NFT or securities issuers can reach us at

About Horizon

Horizon is a fintech company that builds and powers global securities exchanges with an integrated suite of software for compliant issuance, management, and secondary trading of securities. Their in-house solutions combine Wall Street and Silicon Valley to power the next generation of securities offerings and trading in the U.S. and globally. Learn more at

About MERJ

MERJ Exchange (MERJ) operates Upstream as a fully regulated and licensed integrated securities exchange, clearing system and depository for digital and non-digital securities. MERJ is an affiliate of the World Federation of Exchanges (WFE), recognized by HM Revenue and Customs UK, a full member of the Association of National Numbering Agencies (ANNA) and a Qualifying Foreign Exchange for OTC Markets in the US. MERJ is also a member of the Sustainable Stock Exchanges Initiative.


This press release shall not constitute an offer to sell securities or the solicitation of an offer to buy securities in any jurisdiction where such offer or solicitation is not permitted. U.S. investors are not permitted to trade in upstream listed securities, including NFTs with securities characteristics. U.S. and Canadian citizens will only be able to trade in a security they currently own that has listed on upstream for liquidation only.

Upstream is a MERJ Exchange market. MERJ Exchange is a licensed Securities Exchange, an affiliate of the World Federation of Exchanges and full member of ANNA. MERJ supports global issuers of traditional and digital securities through the entire asset life cycle from issuance to trading, clearing, settlement and registry. It operates a fair and transparent marketplace in line with international best practice and principles of operations of financial markets. Upstream does not endorse or recommend any public or private securities bought or sold on its app. Upstream does not offer investment advice or recommendations of any kind. All services offered by Upstream are intended for self-directed clients who make their own investment decisions without aid or assistance from Upstream. All customers are subject to the rules and regulations of their jurisdiction. By accessing the site or app, you agreed to be bound by its terms of use and privacy policy. Company and security listings on Upstream are only suitable for investors who are familiar with and willing to accept the high risk associated with speculative investments, often in early and development stage companies. There can be no assurance the valuation of any particular company’s securities is accurate or in agreement with the market or industry comparative valuations. Investors must be able to afford market volatility and afford the loss of their investment. Companies listed on Upstream are subject to significant ongoing corporate obligations including, but not limited to disclosure, filings and notification requirements, as well compliance with applicable quantitative and qualitative listing standards.

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