Nasdaq Financial Framework to Build Ledger Agnostic Blockchain With Microsoft Azure
Nasdaq was the first operator within the financial industry to open an electronic stock exchange, back in 1971. Highly invested in cutting-edge technology, the company also wants to be a pioneer in blockchain through its commercial technology arm, Market Technology, which powers the infrastructure of over 100 exchanges, clearinghouses, and central securities depositories across 50 countries.
Nasdaq’s enterprise offering Nasdaq Financial Framework (NFF) powers a vast portfolio of business applications for customers and is designed to take advantage of the benefits of emerging technologies to enable key strategic advantages for customers. The announced integration with Microsoft Azure Blockchain aims to build a ledger agnostic blockchain capability that supports a multi-ledger strategy, said Nasdaq market technology’s Head of Product Management Magnus Haglind.
“Our [capital markets] industry is evolving faster than ever with the advent and advancement of cloud, blockchain, machine intelligence and others. Key players in the industry are looking to these technologies to explore how they can become more effective and efficient, but also gain competitive advantage.”
Tom Fay, Senior Vice President of Enterprise Architecture at Nasdaq, sees the potential of multiple blockchains with different payment mechanisms.
“With multiple blockchains in use by various industry participants, we believe that the combination of NFF and Microsoft’s blockchain technology can remove some of the project complexities that exist in this realm. Additionally, as more industries move towards capital markets technology and structures, we see the potential for blockchain to provide value in secure, frictionless and instantaneous matching of buyers and sellers.”
Nasdaq’s NFF customers – mostly exchanges, clearinghouses, and central securities depositories – will also be able to use other NFF applications that incorporate distributed ledger technologies without the need for ledger-specific skills or knowledge. As Microsoft Azure helps Nasdaq remove major complexities in blockchain, more market participants are likely to join the movement.
Microsoft’s Azure blockchain is a backbone of the R3 consortium’s blockchain network. The Ethereum-based platform has partnered with a number of companies, including BitPay, Emercoin, LibraTax, and Manifold. The Blockchain-as-a-Service offering has partnered with BankChain, the Indian blockchain initiative for the banking sector. Azure also added Easy NXT in order to allow developers deploy their own NXT nodes.
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