Blockchain technology provider Chain has released an open source blockchain protocol developed over the last 18 months through partnership with various financial services firms.

Capital One, Citi, Fidelity, First Data, Fiserv, Mitsubishi UFJ, Nasdaq, State Street and Visa contributed to the development of the Chain Open Standard.

Jim McCarthy, executive vice president, Innovation & Strategic Partnerships at Visa, commented:

“Visa and Chain have been collaborating to explore how a blockchain architecture can operate at Visa’s scale to the benefit of our clients. The Chain Open Standard is the culmination of many months of iteration and problem solving, and we are pleased to be playing an ongoing role in that process.”

Brad Peterson, Executive Vice President and CIO at Nasdaq, added:

“Nasdaq has been pleased to participate in the development of the Chain Open Standard through a variety of use cases, including private market securities, proxy voting and clearing. In particular, we are excited to be collaborating with our market technology clients on these developments and look forward to our continued innovation in this area.”

Hu Liang, Senior Managing Director, Emerging Technologies Center at State Street, said:

“As our effort on advancing blockchain adoption internally and with the broader financial industry continues, Chain’s protocol supports some of the most complex use cases we have in mind. We are looking forward to continuing this collaboration with Chain and the community around this Open Standard.”

Debby Hopkins, Chief Innovation Officer of Citi and CEO of Citi Ventures, commented:

“Chain is a dynamic collaborative partner in both our investment and innovation portfolios, enabling Citi to explore blockchain applications for our customers in currencies, payments and beyond. The Chain Open Standard will greatly advance the progress and future scale of new blockchain use cases in an evolving financial ecosystem.”

The Chain Open Standard was apparently designed to enable high-scale financial applications to run on permissioned blockchain networks while meeting regulatory, security and privacy requirements of the financial services industry.

According the Silicon Valley startup, the characteristics of the Chain Open Standard include the following:

  • Consensus model that achieves transaction finality in less than a second, even at high transaction volumes
  • Privacy solution that encrypts blockchain data and provides selective read access to relevant counterparties and regulators
  • Smart contract framework and virtual machine that supports simple rule enforcement as well as Turing complete programs with key-value storage
  • Scalable data model that reduces operational load for network participants
  • Rich metadata layer to meet KYC and AML requirements

Adam Ludwin, CEO of Chain, explained:

“Chain’s approach puts our partners’ requirements at the center of an iterative and collaborative R&D effort. By partnering deeply on real projects with market leaders across a range of use cases in banking, payments, capital markets and insurance, we have designed a blockchain standard from the ground-up to solve problems in a cohesive way. We are delighted to be opening this multi-year effort to the broader financial community today.”

For the digital assets trialed for Nasdaq Linq in December 2015, Chain utilized the Open Assets Protocol developed by Coinprism Founder Flavian Charlon.

Since launching, Chain has raised $43 million from 20 investors including some of the financial institutions trialing its blockchain protocol.