Major firms deploy blockchain for corporate action boost

Firms including JP Morgan and Northern Trust have completed a blockchain-based pilot test targeting proxy vote transparency and analytics.
By Paul Walsh
Broadridge Financial Solutions, JP Morgan, Northern Trust and Banco Santander have successfully completed a pilot employing blockchain technology targeting improved global proxy vote transparency and analytics.

The pilot, Broadridge’s first application of blockchain technology, aims to provide increased transparency by adapting the technology to deliver daily insight into vote progress throughout the issuer’s proxy voting period.

The application also provides role-based access to voting data through use of cryptography and smart contract technology.

“We believe blockchain will drive increased quality and efficiency in the voting chain by reducing complexity that exists within the process today,” said Vijay Mayadas, senior vice president and global head of corporate strategy at Broadridge.

The successful test is the latest in a number of blockchain deployments across industry sectors.

Last month, SIX Securities Services revealed it had developed a blockchain powered service covering the full bond trading life cycle from issuance to settlement.

In addition at the beginning of February, The Depository Trust & Clearing Corporation (DTCC), completed a proof-of-concept designed to improve the netting process for repo transactions using blockchain.

“We are pleased to partner with Broadridge in undertaking this innovative endeavour as we explore the use of blockchain to drive efficiencies across the custody space,” said Chris Rowland, global head of custody at JP Morgan.

“Corporate governance is a key focus for our custody clients and we are pleased to collaborate with Broadridge on this important initiative,” said Justin Chapman, global head of market advocacy & innovation research at Northern Trust.