Open main menu

Digital Asset Holdings

Digital Asset (or Digital Asset Holdings, LLC) is a financial technology company that builds products based on distributed ledger technology (DLT) for regulated financial institutions, such as financial market infrastructure providers, CCPs, CSDs, exchanges, banks, custodians and their market participants. The company has raised $107.2 million in three rounds of funding [1][2]

Digital Asset
FounderDon R. Wilson Sunil Hirani
HeadquartersNew York City, United States
Area served



Digital Asset was founded in 2014 by Sunil Hirani and Don R. Wilson, and Blythe Masters was named as CEO in March 2015.[3][4][5][6][7] It is headquartered in New York City, USA with additional offices in London, Hong Kong, Sydney, Zurich and Budapest. It currently employs over 170 people.[8][9]

The board is composed of Michael Bodson, Cristóbal Conde, AG Gangadhar, Peter Hiom, Sunil Hirani, Tony James, Stephan Leithner, Sallie Krawcheck, Blythe Masters, George Nunn, Sanoke Viswanathan, and Don R. Wilson.[10][11]

To date, over $115M in funding has been raised from fifteen investors (ABN Amro, Accenture, Australian Securities Exchange, BNP Paribas, Broadridge, Citi, CME Group, Deutsche Börse Group, Depository Trust & Clearing Corporation, Goldman Sachs, IBM, JPMorgan Chase, NEX, PNC Financial Services, and Banco Santander). The company has strategic business relationships with Accenture, Broadridge, GFT, Google, IBM, IntellectEU and PwC to help scale and accelerate the adoption and deployment its technology.[12][13][14]


June 2015: The company acquired Bits of Proof, which had developed an enterprise-grade implementation of blockchain server security tools. [15][16]

June 2015: The company acquired Hyperledger, which had developed a permissioned distributed ledger that did not require native cryptocurrency, and was designed specifically for financial institutions. [17][18] On June 25, 2015 the Moneybeat column from The Wall Street Journal wrote that the "acquisition of HyperLedger might raise eyebrows in the bitcoin community, where there is aversion to the idea that Wall Street might co-opt blockchain technology and strip it of its decentralized nature."[19] In 2016 the company donated the Hyperledger name to the Linux Foundation. [20]

September 2015: Company software was used in the US$5 million initial public offering of Pivit, a gaming company. [21][22][23] Digital Asset Holdings also partnered with a New York-based secure hardware wallet developer and manufacturer Case and London-based blockchain security company Elliptic to securely issue the securities to Pivit and its investors.[24]

October 2015: The company acquired, which had developed a blockchain-as-a-service offering for financial institutions to develop and test applications using Blockstack’s APIs and SDK. [25][26][27]

January 2016: Selected by the Australian Securities Exchange (ASX) to develop solutions for the Australian market with initial focus on post-trade (clearing and settlement) services in the cash equities market. [28]

March 2016: Selected by the Depository Trust & Clearing Corporation (DTCC) to develop and test a proof of concept for managing the clearing and settlement of U.S. Treasury, Agency, and Agency Mortgage-Backed repurchase agreement (repo) transactions. [29][30]

April 2016: The company acquired Elevence, which had developed a domain specific language to safely and securely model and execute complex financial agreements with certainty and finality, while preserving data confidentiality. [31]

September 2016: Signed an agreement with SIX Securities Services to develop a prototype for securities lifecycle processing. [32]

December 2017: ASX announced the decision to replace their Clearing House Electronic Subregister System, CHESS, with distributed ledger technology developed by Digital Asset. [33][34][35][36]

April 2018: The company unveiled a developer program for its enterprise smart contract language, DAML, providing developers with tools and training so that they can use DAML to model multi-party applications that run on the Digital Asset Platform. [37]

July 2018: The company announced a new collaboration with Google to bring Digital Asset’s blockchain platform and developer tools to the Google Cloud Platform. [38]

The Digital Asset PlatformEdit

The company’s primary offering is the Digital Asset Platform, a common foundation on which financial services applications can be built using DLT to mutualize market infrastructure across distinct market participants while maintaining confidentiality and scalability. Participants in the Platform share a single source of truth which provides continuous data integrity, any desired or mandated degree of transparency and the opportunity for rapid innovation. The DA Platform enforces consistent interpretation and application of business logic, and provides a real-time, auditable log of ordered evidences of events. These evidences are cryptographically linked to private trade data that is replicated selectively among only those parties entitled to view or interact with it. By combining a network-wide, replicated DLT log and partially replicated reference data, each participant can create their subsection of the ledger with full confidence that it is consistent with that of other parties.

An overview of the Digital Asset Platform can be found in a non-technical whitepaper published by the company in December 2016. [39][40]

The Platform includes Digital Asset Modeling Language (DAML); a domain specific language built specifically for distributed ledgers that is capable of expressing any right or obligation, including cash, securities and derivatives, whereby the code defines the considerations between parties and determines how these contractual relations can evolve over time. [41][42]

Digital Asset also offers a cloud-based version of this technology, DAML Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS), which is available on the Google Cloud Platform. DAML PaaS is a fully managed solution that developers can use to test and deploy DLT applications, accessible through Google Cloud’s Orbitera application marketplace. [43]


Digital Asset has publicly announced three projects:

Australian Securities Exchange (ASX): ASX selected Digital Asset as a technology partner to develop, test and demonstrate to ASX a working prototype of a post-trade platform for the cash equity market using DLT. Following the success of the prototype, ASX entered into an agreement for Digital Asset to develop a CHESS (Clearing House Electronic Subregister System) DLT-based replacement candidate. In December 2017 ASX formalized a decision to move forward with the replacement of CHESS with distributed ledger technology developed by Digital Asset. [44]

Depository Trust & Clearing Corporation (DTCC): DTCC contracted Digital Asset to develop a clearing and settlement solution for repurchase agreement (repo) transactions. The goal is to reduce risk and capital requirements for the repo market by enabling DTCC’s Fixed Income Clearing Corporation (FICC) to become the settlement counterparty in real-time. [45]

SIX Securities Services (SIX): SIX Securities Services selected Digital Asset to develop a prototype that demonstrates the commercial viability of DLT across the Swiss financial market. The initial phase was to build a prototype for securities lifecycle processing using the Digital Asset Platform. [46]


  1. ^ "Crunchbase: Digital Asset Overview".
  2. ^ Irrera, Anna. "Blockchain startup Digital Asset raises $40 million". U.S. Retrieved 2018-04-30.
  3. ^ Michael J. Casey (11 March 2015). "Ex-J.P. Morgan CDS Pioneer Blythe Masters To Head Bitcoin-Related Startup". The Wall Street Journal.
  4. ^ Aaron Timms (21 April 2015). "Derivatives Pioneer Blythe Masters Tackles Digital Currency". Institutional Investor.
  5. ^ John Detrixhe, Matthew Leising and Silla Brush (11 March 2015). "Swaps Pioneer Masters to Lead Virtual-Currency Startup".
  6. ^ Tom Braithwaite and Ben McLannahan (10 March 2015). "Masters joins cryptocurrency start-up". Financial Times.
  7. ^ Sydney Ember (11 March 2015). "Former JPMorgan Executive Blythe Masters Joins Bitcoin-Related Start-Up". The New York Times.
  8. ^ "Company Overview of Digital Asset Holdings, LLC". Retrieved 7 December 2017.
  9. ^ "James Powell Joins Digital Asset as new CIO and CTO of Engineering" (PDF). Digital Asset press release. 26 July 2018.
  10. ^ "Company Overview of Digital Asset Holdings, LLC". Retrieved 7 December 2017.
  11. ^ "Blackstone's Tony James, Ex-Googler Gangadhar and Deutsche Börse Group's Leithner join Digital Asset Board" (PDF). Digital Asset press release. 18 July 2018.
  12. ^ "Crunchbase: Digital Asset Overview".
  13. ^ "Digital Asset Opens Developer Program for its Enterprise Smart Contract Language, DAML" (PDF). Digital Asset press release. 19 April 2018.
  14. ^ "Digital Asset and Google Cloud Collaborate to bring Blockchain Solutions to the Cloud" (PDF). Digital Asset press release. 23 July 2018.
  15. ^ Stan Higgins (25 June 2015). "Blythe Masters Firm Acquires Two Blockchain Startups".
  16. ^ "Digital Asset Acquires Hyperledger Following Prior Acquisition of Bits of Proof". Digital Asset press release. 25 June 2015.
  17. ^ Stan Higgins (25 June 2015). "Blythe Masters Firm Acquires Two Blockchain Startups".
  18. ^ "Digital Asset Acquires Hyperledger Following Prior Acquisition of Bits of Proof". Digital Asset press release. 25 June 2015.
  19. ^ Sarah Krouse. "Blythe Masters Quick Off the Block With Startup Buys". WSJ.
  20. ^ Ryan Strauss (9 February 2016). "Digital Asset Holdings Donates 'Hyperledger' Name to Linux Foundation".
  21. ^ Sarah Krouse (9 September 2015). "Pivit Raises $5 Million With Help of Blythe Masters-Led Start-Up". The Wall Street Journal.
  22. ^ Michael del Castillo (9 September 2015). "Blythe Masters enters Wall Street's bitcoin tech race with her first issuance of a crypto-security". New York Business Journal.
  23. ^ "Pivot Issues Capital Investment on Blockchain Using Digital Asset Software". Digital Asset press release.
  24. ^ "Blythe Masters' Digital Asset Holdings Issues Crypto-Security for Betting Platform Pivit". Cointelegraph. 11 September 2015.
  25. ^ Giulio Prisco (26 June 2015). "Blythe Masters' Digital Asset Holdings Acquires Hyperledger and Bits of Proof". Bitcoin Magazine.
  26. ^ Stan Higgins (29 October 2015). "Digital Asset Holdings to Acquire Blockchain Startup Blockstack".
  27. ^ "Digital Asset Announces Acquisition of". Digital Asset press release. 29 October 2015.
  28. ^ Swati Pandey (22 January 2016). "Australia's ASX set to lead in blockchain for public companies". Reuters.
  29. ^ Samburaj Das (30 March 2016). "Digital Asset & DTCC Partner to Form Blockchain for Repo Clearing".
  30. ^ "DTCC and Digital Asset to Develop Distributed Ledger SOlution to Drive Improvements in Repo Clearing". DTCC press release. 29 March 2016.
  31. ^ Michael del Castillo (20 April 2016). "Digital Asset Holdings Acqui-Hires Smart Contract Startup".
  32. ^ Michael del Castillo (5 October 2016). "How Switzerland's First Financial Markets Blockchain Was Born".
  33. ^ "New ASX technology improves the competitiveness of Australia's financial markets". Media Release, Treasurer of the Commonwealth of Australia. 7 December 2017.
  34. ^ Zheping Huang (6 December 2017). "Australia is now home to the world's first blockchain-based stock exchange".
  35. ^ Michael del Castillo (6 December 2017). "ASX says Yes: Stock Market to Settle Trades with DLT".
  36. ^ Michael del Castillo (7 December 2017). "Blythe Masters: ASX Blockchain Embrace 'Precedent Setting'".
  37. ^ "Digital Asset Opens Developer Program for its Enterprise Smart Contract Language, DAML" (PDF). Digital Asset press release. 19 April 2018.
  38. ^ "Digital Asset and Google Cloud Collaborate to bring Blockchain Solutions to the Cloud" (PDF). Digital Asset press release. 23 July 2018.
  39. ^ "Digital Asset Holdings lifts the lid on blockchain architecture in 'non-technical' whitepaper". 7 December 2016.
  40. ^ "Digital Asset Platform: Non-technical Whitepaper".
  41. ^ Jamie Redman (21 April 2016). "Digital Asset Holdings Creates a 'Smart Contract Alternative'".
  42. ^ Samburaj Das (20 April 2016). "Digital Asset Reveals Smart Contracts Alternative for Financial Industry".
  43. ^ "Digital Asset and Google Cloud Collaborate to bring Blockchain Solutions to the Cloud" (PDF). Digital Asset press release. 23 July 2018.
  44. ^ "ASX is replacing CHESS with distributed ledger technology (DLT) developed by Digital Asset". Australian Securities Exchange.
  45. ^ "DTCC & Digital Asset Move to Next Phase After Successful Proof-of-Concept for Repo Transactions Using Distributed Ledger Technology". DTCC press release. 27 February 2017.
  46. ^ "SIX Securities Services develops distributed ledger-based bond issuing solution". SIX press release. 22 March 2017.

External linksEdit