Digital Asset Taps Former JP Morgan Exec for ASX Project

Fintech startup Digital Asset has hired a former JP Morgan Chase executive to work on a blockchain-based clearing and settlement system it is developing for the Australian Securities Exchange (ASX).

Stewart Cowan, formerly the bank’s Asia-Pacific regional head of trading services, will join the firm as a senior product manager, Global Capital reported on Thursday. The startup, which is headed by former JPMorgan executive Blythe Masters, struck a deal with ASX in late 2017 to rebuild its CHESS post-trade settlement system.

ASX came to the decision after building proofs-of-concept and conducting trials over the course of two years, as previously reported.

The securities exchange has also previously invested in Digital Asset, which has long been considered a leader in the enterprise blockchain space.

More broadly, Cowan is the former JPMorgan executive to leave for a blockchain venture.

Amber Baldet, who led the development of the company’s permissioned blockchain platform Quorum, announced her plans to depart and start a new project of her own earlier this month. Details about this venture are scarce.

Baldet’s departure came just weeks after rumors that the banking giant was considering spinning Quorum off into its own independent entity first surfaced. It remains unclear what will happen to the blockchain branch going forward.

Businessman image via Shutterstock

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