Australian stock exchange abandons blockchain revamp

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Australian stock exchange abandons blockchain revamp Duncan is an award-winning technology industry analyst, specialising in cloud computing, blockchain, martech and edge computing.

Australia’s primary securities exchange, ASX, has ditched its plans to embrace blockchain and signed an agreement with Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) to provide a next generation clearing and settlement platform to service the Australian market.

ASX will implement TCS’ flagship product TCS BaNCS for Market Infrastructure to enable the transformation.

Prior to the announcement, the ASX had been working on a seven-year rebuild of its old software. Its new platform was to be based on blockchain technology and would have made it the first stock exhcange to utilise such technology.

The ASX head of securities and payments, Tim Hogben, was previously reported as saying: “96% of the software is currently in an operating-and-test environment. That 96% of that software is working. If it wasn’t working, you’d be hearing about it, let me tell you.”

However, after a series of delays, ASX scrapped the project in November, with an external review putting it down to ‘poor vendor management and technology issues’.

The now selected TCS product will be used to replace ASX’s existing platform for cash equities clearing and settlement. The new platform will be on a state-of-the-art technology stack with TCS BaNCS for Market Infrastructure and is proposed to be implemented in two releases. While the clearing service is expected to be delivered in the first phase, the settlement depository and sub‐register services will follow in the second phase. This staged approach is expected to reduce overall delivery risk and help manage the impact on industry stakeholders.

TCS has proven its execution capabilities for mission-critical projects with its award-winning suite of products and platforms. The agreement with ASX further fortifies its footprint in Australia, one of TCS’ fastest growing geographies, with its strong local partner network, expertise in cutting-edge technologies, investments in research and innovation, and deep domain knowledge of the banking financial services, and insurance sector for over 30+ years. TCS has also been recognized as one of the LinkedIn Top 25 companies and a Top Employer in the region for four consecutive years.

Vivekanand Ramgopal, president, BFSI Products & Platforms, TCS, said: “We are delighted to be ASX’s choice for this transformation. Our selection is an affirmation of our track record in this mission-critical business, continuous investments in our products, and shared vision of how we see the future of Market Infrastructure Institutions in a technology-led world. TCS BaNCS for Market Infrastructure continues to gain traction in the global market with its rich functionality and unique multi-asset class capability across the post-trade value chain. Combined with our fit-for-purpose approach to technology and innovation, this gives us the confidence to deliver a robust future-proof solution stack for the Australian market.”

TCS BaNCS for Market Infrastructure is an industry-first solution designed specifically for central securities depositories (CSDs), central counterparty clearing houses (CCPs), Exchanges, and Central Banks. With an ability to support multiple markets, currencies, and asset classes, it has been adopted by market infrastructure institutions in more than 20 countries.

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