The Australian Securities Exchange (ASX) has signalled it will abandon plans to rebuild its core platforms on blockchain technology.
In 2017 the ASX decided to replace its core app, named CHESS, with a system based on blockchain and Digital Asset Modelling Language (DAML). The Exchange hoped to allow market participants to run their own nodes of a blockchain that would record their transactions, before rippling out over the blockchain so that all other stakeholders would also have a record of the transaction. This was billed as a modern way to run an exchange, instead of an old-fashioned central platform.
The plan drew enormous attention, and praise, from the blockchain community, which saw it as an endorsement of the tech’s suitability for the extremely demanding and sensitive job of running a significant securities exchange – and therefore for almost anything else.
But the project did not go well. In 2020 it was pushed back a year, then further delays led to a plan to go live in 2023.
In late 2022, the ASX paused the project after a review found that using…