Distributed ledger maker Digital Asset has announced $50 million funding to further its expansion of blockchain technology for the financial sector.
The start up’s thirteen fintech investment specialist backers included ABN AMRO, Accenture, BNP Paribas, Deutsche Börse Group and JP Morgan. Launched in 2015, Digital Asset is aimed at banks, exchanges, settlement and clearing firms, central securities depositories and financial services provider who need faster, but more secure and accountable electronic financial settlement systems.
Digital Asset founder Blyth Masters, a former JP Morgan banker, told Bloomberg that the technology is a ‘form of database’ technology that could a single ‘common source of the truth’ for every single aspect of every transaction in synch. The single source authoritative record of every stage of a transaction could obviate the need for the ‘questionable trade’ investigations conducted by Wall Street, the city and all global financial institutes.
The inventor claims its Distributed Ledger Technology cuts costs through a combination of business logic apps, privately permissioned networks and a cryptographically secure shared infrastructure. Digital Assets’s software will improve post-trade processing and lower the latency, error rates, risk and capital requirements.
“Our investors are putting their capital to work to prove out and drive global adoption of this technology because they see it will be very significant for their businesses in cost avoidance, capital reduction, risk reduction, regulatory compliance – these are big strategic issues for financial firms today,” said Masters.
Included in the round of investment was a contract to speed up settlement in Australia’s stock market ASX, in return for $10.5 million. “We can now trade equities in 150 microseconds, then it takes two days to settle. That makes no sense,” said Elmer Funke Kupper, chief executive officer of ASX. “This is the first opportunity in 20 years to re-engineer the way the market operates end-to-end. We should not miss that opportunity.”
Digital Asset beat 400 applicants for the contract to remake ASX’s clearing and settlement system.
Earlier this week, R3, a blockchain startup backed by 42 banks, said it successfully simulated trades of digital assets on a private network made up of 11 of its members. Meanwhile Overstock.com is expected to unveil the first securities-trading system using blockchain. Nasdaq has reportedly used the technology to complete and record a private securities transaction for the first time.