If minimum viable products (MVPs) have so far proved elusive for companies building blockchain solutions for capital markets, Consensus 2018 marked a notable change in the narrative.
Assembled in New York this week, a handful were even confident enough to give firm timetables for production. For those tired of blue-sky talk, it was refreshing to hear large-scale financial infrastructure projects discussed openly and frankly, in clear terms of where they are and when we can expect to see things going live.
“We are now starting to see at Consensus, examples of where financial services are taking this technology into production with real timelines that they have committed to,” Chris Church, the head of business development at Digital Asset, said.
He told CoinDesk:
“I think that’s a very important proof point for the industry.”
Indeed, DA, a blockchain startup founded by former JP Morgan executive Blythe Masters, has itself been making headway with its overhaul of the Australian Securities Exchange’s (ASX) Clearing House Electronic Sub-register System (CHESS).
“A lot of people have talked about hype and reality,” Church said. But with the ASX’s commitment, at the end of last year, to replace CHESS with DA’s technology, “we now have evidence that a systemically consequential, highly regulated, national market infrastructure has made the decision to take this technology to put it into production for their marketplace.”
Church stressed that this project is not simply “adding something on,” but rather, taking out a chunk of the CHESS system and replacing it.
Looking ahead, Church said that DA is now working with a bunch of other financial market infrastructure providers, including exchange groups in all three major regions – Europe, North America and Asia/Pacific.
Though he wouldn’t name names, Church indicated that these conversations were not about doing more proofs-of-concept.
“A science experiment is not what…