One of the major challenges of the digital currency industry is to keep growing, pushing boundaries and raising awareness of cryptocurrencies in new arenas. The last year or so has been particularly successful in his regard, and continues to be so with a recent talk by Delaware Judge J Travis Laster. In a discussion about voting transparency for institutional investors, he noted that blockchain, the technology that powers Bitcoin and other digital currencies, also holds the key to increased transparency and efficiency within the proxy voting system currently used by corporate shareholders.
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At a recent meeting of the non-profit organization the Council of Institutional Investors, there has been some focus on the power imbalance that hinders corporate investors. The organization itself is dedicated to discussing and highlighting institutional investment issues. One speaker, Delaware Chancery Court Vice Chancellor J Travis Laster, talked about the proxy voting, the practice of third parties voting on a stakeholder’s behalf, and the issue that surround the current solution.
He noted that “the companies running these proxy services are making healthy profits in a non-competitive market. They might play around the edges, but real change will have to come from the outside. The good news is that you have a plunger that you can use to clean up the plumbing. That plunger is distributed ledger technologies, the technology that drives bitcoin.”
While there have been numerous studies already on the viability of blockchain to facilitate voting solutions, in such a notoriously conservative environment it remains quite a bold statement. The argument put forward is that blockchain ads much needed transparency and add efficiency to what is currently an opaque, obscure process.
For the cryptocurrency industry, this is a significant announcement not just for the point that it is yet another avocation of blockchain technology, but it is entering another, significant arena. Corporate investment is as removed from the concept of boundary pushing that digital currencies have come to represent as it is possible to get. Yet here we have a Judge talking about how much corporate shareholders could benefit from utilizing blockchain technology.
The ability to enter yet more markets, find new processes and applications where cryptocurrency technology can bring positive changes and encourage more people to enjoy the benefits of digital currency has been a feature of the last eighteen months, and looks set to continue into the next year and beyond. This is incredibly healthy for the wider industry, and a sign that the opportunities for business are increasing.