The blockchain-based corporate bond market is about to burst into life
The US$124 billion global bond markets seem at last to be taking pole position in the race to unlock the efficiencies conferred by blockchain technology. Much of the effort is directed at the primary markets, where the telephone plays the part it has since the 1960s and the fax and spreadsheet continue in the roles they stole from the telex and the pocket calculator in the 1980s. But the real prize in fixed income lies in the secondary market, and especially in corporate bond markets that have become a byword for illiquidity and price opacity. Enter LedgerEdge, a two-year-old start-up based on R3 Corda technology that is exciting the buy-side as well as the sell-side with its promise of a decentralised marketplace in which it will be possible to find and then buy and sell corporate bonds without expensive information leakage. After making rapid progress since its foundation in 2020, LedgerEdge has acquired its regulatory licence from the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) in London and is on course for its UK, US and EU launches in the second and third quarters of 2022. Future of Finance co-founder Dominic Hobson spoke to LedgerEdge CEO and Co-founder David Nicol.