STEX, a former Stocks.Exchange, is a centralized cryptocurrency trading platform based in Estonia. Founded in 2017, the company is operated by Etna Development, an Estonian FinTech firm. In February 2021, STEX became a member of the Blockchain and Virtual Currencies Working Group (BVC WG) whose mission is to educate, monitor, and advise the European Commission officers on the development of sound regulation. The BVC WG is in turn a member of the European Commission Payment Systems Market Expert Group (PSMEG).
STEX is an acronym for Smart Token Exchange. The platform focuses on facilitating Initial Coin Offerings (ICO) and altcoin trading opportunities. It allows purchasing and selling cryptocurrencies with bank cards, exchanging fiat to crypto and vice versa at low rates, investing digital assets, etc. Besides, STEX was one of the first companies to introduce the integration of tax reporting smart services to its customers.
STEX has many features to attract users. For example, it offers 400+ trading pairs for spot trading, limit, and stop-limit orders, price notifications, the referral program, Trading Views advanced charting and a bug bounty program. 50+ fiat currencies including the most popular options such as USD, GBP, EUR, CAD, AUD, and CHF are available on the platform.
Clients can use the desktop version of the exchange or download the mobile STEX application for Android and iOS devices from Google Play, App Store, or an APK for Android. The mobile application provides access to the full range of STEX services, allowing to trade anytime on the go.
The STEX exchange provides clients with a wide range of integrated smart services and tools to make their trading easier. Thus, the platform offers 2 types of trade options: spot orders and stop-limit orders. A stop-limit order instructs the exchange to automatically create a spot order when the market conditions meet the desired level. The improved Trading View shows users the order book, asset’s trading history, user’s trade history, open orders, finished orders, open orders in the current trading pair, etc.
Cointracking is integrated with STEX so that users can analyze their trades and generate real-time reports on profit, loss, taxes, realized and unrealized gains, etc. Also, the exchange offers ZelCore which is a multi-asset platform and a wallet integrated via API with top exchanges and providing advanced trading functionality.
Koinly is a service used to calculate cryptocurrency taxes. Yubico is another solution created to protect STEX accounts from takeovers and upgrade multi-factor user authentication. Each user receives a YubiKey, a physical key that allows access to their STEX account from a computer or mobile device. ZenLedger, a tax optimization software for cryptocurrency investors, is also available for STEX traders.
Projects can participate in the listing process on STEX by offering their coins. The estimated time for listing a token is 2-7 days. The newly listed coins must have a trading volume of at least $500 per day, otherwise, they get delisted.
The Bug Bounty program rewards developers for discovering security issues with cryptocurrencies listed on STEX and their components. Finally, the STEX referral program incentivizes participants for inviting their friends to trade on the platform and allows them to earn 25% of their referral’s trading fee forever.
STEX is a licensed company that complies with Estonian and EU regulations for crypto service providers. It is registered with The Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) and a bureau of the United States Department of Treasury. In addition, the exchange complies with anti-money laundering standards outlined in Anti-Money Laundering and Countering the Financing of Terrorism Act 2020 and Know Your Customer (KYC) standards. The platform has a dedicated employee, an AML Policy Compliance Officer, who monitors customers' transactions every day.
The STEX company takes multiple measures to ensure the security of users' sensitive data and digital wallets. It supports IP access control, 2-factor authentication, instant login with Google, Microsoft, or Linkedin accounts, anti-phishing, various verification methods, email encryption, web authentication with a security key, etc.
As a regulated exchange, STEX requires new customers to go through a rigorous identity verification process by providing proof-of-ID and proof-of-address identification documents. Besides, web authentication with a security key can be used for additional verification before performing logins and confirming withdrawals. Also, STEX relies on email encryption, a program that provides encryption and decryption for data communication. The anti-phishing function helps to identify original STEX emails from fakes.
Thanks to all the protection measures mentioned above, STEX has never been the victim of a hacker attack since its launch.
The platform doesn’t differentiate between makers and takers. Instead, it has 3 levels of the commission size depending on the user verification level. The level 1 unverified users are charged 0.2%, level 2, users verified by STEX Smart-ID, pay 0.15%, while level 3 is for users verified by Cryptonomica who pay 0.1%.
Some currencies have a minimum deposit amount. Processing deposits and withdrawals may take 30-60 minutes depending on the blockchain, network overload, and the number of miners. The withdrawal limit is $50,000 per day.
Cryptocurrencies can be deposited through a crypto-to-crypto transfer from an external wallet or bought directly on the exchange. The available fiat payment methods include SEPA transfer, VISA/MasterCard, Apple Pay, iDEAL, and Bancontact.
STEX team and partners
The company was founded by a serial entrepreneur from Estonia Vadym Kurylovych. He has been the CEO at Stex since April 2016. He has also joined the advisory board of Cryptonomica, an identity verification service. Izabela Daržinkevič is a member of the management board at Stex who also works as the CEO at UAB CONSTO. Pavel Singaevskiy is a senior sales account manager.
Over the years, STEX has grown into a business with a wide network of partnerships. For instance, it has integrated BANXA to make cryptocurrency purchases quick and convenient with a bank card or other local payment methods. STEX’s collaboration with the Mercuryo wallet service simplifies asset management and allows the use of bank cards for fiat-to-crypto and crypto-to-fiat transactions. Coinify and Simplex offer a variety of two-way virtual currency services.