Digital Asset Holdings (DAH), the blockchain technology startup led by former JPMorgan executive Blythe Masters, has acquired another venture, Blockstack.io.
Masters joined the newly-formed startup as CEO earlier this year, looking to make another major impact on Wall Street. She is known as the creator of credit default swaps, derivatives designed to hedge against bad loans but whose apparent misuse turned them into “financial weapons of mass destruction” during the 2008 financial crisis. She later headed JPMorgan’s commodities business, and left the bank last year.
With DAH, Masters is looking to revolutionize the way securities are settled through the adaptation of blockchain technology. A distributed ledger system can potentially save billions in costs traditionally incurred during the settlement process, and eliminate counterparty risk, errors and lengthy clearing lead times.
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DAH is proposing shared replicated ledgers and tokenization for securities settlements, syndicated loans and other use cases. In June, it announced its acquisition of two blockchain tech startups, Hyperledger and Bits of Proof.
The latest acquisition underscores Masters’ strategy of leveraging her expertise in capital markets, and combining it with blockchain talent that is in scarce supply. Masters, according a report, is looking to raise $25 million through her Wall Street connections for the startup.
Blockstack.io’s stated mandate is to offer “blockchain-as-a-service”- a “simplified” infrastructure for permissioned distributed ledger systems. It would power high volume, low latency trading and settlement of commodities, currencies and equities, and offer developer tools and API’s.
The startup is run by former employees of Google and Nasdaq, and won the “Best of Show” competition at this year’s FinovateFall 2015.