IBM, Intel, JP Morgan Lead Open Ledger Project to Create New Blockchain

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by Tatsiana Yablonskaya · 3 min read
IBM, Intel, JP Morgan Lead Open Ledger Project to Create New Blockchain
IBM, Intel and other tech giants as well as big banks like J.P. Morgan have joined forces to create the Open Ledger Project with the Linux Foundation, with the goal of re-imagining supply chains, contracts and other ways data about ownership and value are exchanged in a digital world. Photo: Patrick Heinecke/Flickr

The companies have teamed up to create a technology similar to blockchain with hugh potential to change business services.

Several large and influential companies are ready to come up with the Open Ledger Project, an initiative aimed at creating an alternative to the blockchain. Such giants as IBM, Intel, and Cisco as well as the London Stock Exchange Group and big-name banks JP Morgan, Wells Fargo, and State Street are seeking the way to develop a technology similar to the blockchain to enhance a wide range of business services.

IBM acts as a leader in the Open Ledger Project to be overseen by the Linux Foundation. This non-profit organization has officially confirmed this collaboration.

Jim Zemlin, executive director at The Linux Foundation, commented: “Distributed ledgers are poised to transform a wide range of industries from banking and shipping to the Internet of Things, among others. 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.”

This global partnership aims at positive transformation of distributed ledger that can change the way business transactions are conducted around the world. The full list of companies already agreed to join the project looks as follows: Accenture, ANZ Bank, Cisco, CLS, Credits, Deutsche Börse, Digital Asset Holdings, DTCC, Fujitsu Limited, IC3, IBM, Intel, J.P. Morgan, London Stock Exchange Group, Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group (MUFG), R3, State Street, SWIFT, VMware and Wells Fargo.

It’s hard to enumerate all the companies that have already tried and finally succeeded in applying the blockchain to their business. This overwhelming technology tracks the exchange of money but at the same time it can track the exchange of anything else that holds value, including stocks, bonds, and other financial securities. This advantage has just been appreciated by Overstock. The company got an approval from the Securities and Exchange Commission to issue company stock via Internet using blockchain.

Nasdaq made no bones about its interest to bitcoin’s underlying technology as well. It had been experimenting with blockchain in order to apply it for stock market. Finally it partnered with Chain in order to use blockchain to issue and transfer shares. The technology is expected to accelerate and simplify the process of trading.  Robert Greifeld, Nasdaq CEO, called blockchain a natural digital evolution for managing physical securities. In his opinion the technology has enough potential to be beneficial not only for our clients but for the broader global capital markets.

Attempts to take advantage of the blockchain are reasonable. That’s why it’s even more interesting that IBM and its partners have decided to develop a new distributed ledger. The project is ambitious but it means so many pluses. The companies have studied all ins and outs of the technology, thus they can provide way too more sensible approach to the way new technology will be built and how it will be used.

Jerry Cuomo, vice president and chief technology officer of IBM’s software group, talks about the projects: “The current blockchain is a great design pattern. Now, how do we make that real for business? What are the key attributes needed to make that happen? That’s what this organization is about. We are very excited about blockchain, less as a once-and-only-once implementation of an idea, but as an idea that can be implemented and extended in ways that are consistent but enhanced”.

The companies involved in the Open Ledger Project haven’t revealed yet how exactly they will enhance the idea of blockchain. Cuomo even expressed an assumption that project can end up dovetailing with other distributed ledgers.

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