Industry backs Linux Foundation open source Hyperledger project
A range of financial services and technology firms are backing efforts by The Linux Foundation to develop “an enterprise grade, open source distributed ledger framework”.
Digital Asset Holdings, the distributed ledger developer headed by former JP Morgan banker Blythe Masters is contributing its Hyperledger brand name to the project as well as technical resources. Digital Asset recently hired Chris Church, former chief executive of Americas and global head of securities at Swift, as chief business development officer.
Swift is among the initial backers of the Hyperledger project, along with ANZ Bank, Cisco, CLS, Credits, Digital Asset Holdings, Fujitsu, IC3, IBM, Intel, London Stock Exchange, Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group, State Street, Swift, VMware and Wells Fargo.
“Swift is delighted to support this industry-wide effort to advance distributed ledger technology,” said Craig Young, Swift’s chief technology officer. “Cooperation and collaboration will be key to ensuring the scalability and adoption of this technology.”
The not-for-profit Linux Foundation supports open source software developments, and intends that the distributed ledger framework will free developers “to focus on building robust, industry-specific applications, platforms and hardware systems to support business transactions”.
“Distributed ledgers are poised to transform a wide range of industries from banking and shipping to the Internet of Things, among others,” said Jim Zemlin, executive director at the Linux Foundation. “As with any early-stage, highly-complex technology that demonstrates the ability to change the way we live our lives and conduct business, blockchain demands a cross-industry, open source collaboration to advance the technology for all.”
IBM will donate “tens of thousands of lines” of its existing codebase and its corresponding intellectual property to this open source community.
“A broad, cross-industry and open source approach is critical to advance the potential for blockchain and make it mainstream,” said Arvind Krishna, senior vice president and director, IBM Research. “Even beyond building out standards, creating common code will allow organizations to focus on creating industry-specific applications that enhance the value of this technology.”
The collaboration is expected to help identify and address important features and currently missing requirements for a cross-industry open standard for distributed ledgers that can transform the way business transactions are conducted around the world.
Nigel Dobson, ANZ’s general manager of payments transformation said he sees involvement with the project as an opportunity to explore and contribute to real-world, bank-grade applications of the technology and wider frameworks. “I see significant potential opportunities in the future to improve our customer experience and potentially deliver productivity gains by solving real business challenges, with initial use cases in payments and particularly correspondent banking.”
Moiz Kohari, group head of technology innovation at the London Stock Exchange said:“We are committed to an open source collaborative approach to the development of the building blocks for blockchain technology. We believe this technology has the potential to drive change across the industry but will need to be developed in partnership with clients and other industry participants under an open source approach. This needs to be done in a considered and rigorous manner to benefit the market as a whole.”
For more information about the project and how to participate, visit: http://blockchain.linuxfoundation.org