Depository Trust & Clearing Corp. agreed to buy startup Securrency Inc, part of the main US stock-market clearinghouse’s drive to offer blockchain technology and services for functions like post-trade processing of tokenized assets.
(Bloomberg) — Depository Trust & Clearing Corp. agreed to buy startup Securrency Inc, part of the main US stock-market clearinghouse’s drive to offer blockchain technology and services for functions like post-trade processing of tokenized assets.
DTCC is paying about $50 million for Annapolis, Maryland-based Securrency, said people with knowledge of the matter, asking not to be identified discussing private information. Securrency’s technology could allow DTCC to facilitate issuance of securities like exchange-traded funds on blockchain networks, DTCC Chief Executive Officer Frank La Salla said. The deal, which is expected to close in the coming weeks, marks DTCC’s first acquisition since 2013 when it took over post-trade processing firm Omgeo.
The company “will always be looking at new tech, and we have to because of the role we play as a strategic infrastructure provider to the industry,” La Salla said in an interview. A DTCC spokesperson declined to comment on the financial terms of the transaction.
The deal represents one of DTCC’s biggest moves in the digital-ledger technology space, which proponents say has the potential to revolutionize financial markets by simplifying an array of functions. As much as $5 trillion worth of traditional financial assets could be represented in the form of digital tokens on blockchains by 2030, Citigroup Inc. analysts estimated in March.
While Wall Street firms have been investing in developing systems using the techonology for almost a decade, few applications have gone live and reached significant usage.
Read More: Clearinghouse’s Blockchain-Based Settlement System Goes Live
Securrency has about 100 staff who will join DTCC, the market infrastructure provider said in a statement. After the acquisition, the firm will be renamed DTCC Digital Assets and Securrency CEO Nadine Chakar will continue to run the unit while being appointed to DTCC’s management committee.
Banks and other large financial firms in recent years have built their own blockchain platforms that perform similar functions. That’s raised concerns about duplication and increased complexity, as those systems aren’t always compatible with each other.
“The industry is graduating from this experimenting phase to how we work together,” he said. “I have found in the past 12 months the conversation has gotten much more grounded and sober around what distributed ledger technology can and should be used for.”
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