Partnerships / Acquisitions

Chain Acquired By Lightyear; New Company To Be Called Interstellar

Blockchain

Chain Inc., the San Francisco blockchain startup, has been bought by Lightyear Corp., a company that is developing on the Stellar blockchain.

Reuters, citing Chain Chief Executive Adam Ludwin, told the news service that the new company, which will be called Interstellar, will move Chain's customer base and products onto the Stellar global public ledger. The company plans to create a platform that will allow organizations to issue, exchange and manage assets.

"We were looking for a way to help our customers move the projects that we have been working on from a private network to a public one,” Ludwin said. “When we started a few years ago, our customers were not ready for a public network. Fast forward three years, and their willingness has gone up, and the maturity of the public networks has changed a lot."

Blockchain is the technology that underpins the cryptocurrency market. Ludwin wouldn't disclose deal terms, but said that Chain investors were cashed out as a result of the transaction. He said it closed last week, but that talks had started late in 2017. Ludwin also noted that the deal was very good for its investors.

Stellar is an open network that lets any currency or asset be digitally issued, transferred and exchanged, noted Reuters. It's also a platform that has piqued the interest of other blockchain players, with IBM recently announcing it is launching a payment network based on the Stellar blockchain. The new company will have a staff of 60 and will be headquartered in San Francisco, with another office in New York City.

As part of the deal, the Chain and Lightyear brands will be retired and Ludwin will serve as the new company's CEO. Jed McCaleb, co-founder of Stellar Development Foundation and Lightyear, will serve as the chief technology officer.

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