Establishment-Backed Blockchain Company R3 Set to Issue IPO
Information has emerged revealing that R3 is considering going public via an IPO. The blockchain software company which is backed by more than 200 of the world’s most prominent corporate names including Intel Corporation, Microsoft Corporation, Wells Fargo & Co., and US Bancorp is reportedly speaking with advisers about the proposed IPO, with no firm decision in view yet.
According to sources, potential buyers have approached the company, although it has not decided on the matter. Major R3 investors including Intel and Bank of America will make the final decision along founder and CEO David Rutter.
Depending on the direction R3 takes, there could be substantial implications in view for many companies it works with across a range of industries including auto manufacturer, finance, and insurance. A change of ownership could potentially signal a shift in strategy and operations. For example, a single financial industry entity becomes the new majority owner, this could lead to an exodus of financial institutions from R3.
Currently, R3’s blockchain development work seeks to aid instant money transfers and loans, amongst other features. Financial institutions on its current roster include Dutch insurance giant ABN Amro NV, Barclays Plc, Bank of New York Mellon Corporation, Bain & Co., and Deutsche Bank AG.
Addressing the present uncertainty in a statement released on July 13, 2018, the company said:
“We’re not surprised about the speculation given the success of Corda, but an IPO is not a path we’re pursuing at this time. Our mission from the start was to deliver a blockchain solution for the widest possible business community, and any decision we make will have that goal in mind.”
R3’s Impressive Growth
Since Goldman Sachs Group Inc. and Banco Santander left R3 in 2016, the company says that over 20 banks have joined the working group, which is a sign of the industry’s confidence in its solutions. As the growth potential for the blockchain software market continues to grow, R3 occupies a critical strategic position as a trusted provider of blockchain solutions around the world.
It already has four offices in New York, London, Singapore and Sao Paulo, with about 180 employees, and it reports that it has started seeing “significant revenue,” which only looks set to grow as the blockchain arms race heats up. R3’s open-source Corda software is already available, and it has started offering an enterprise version that comes with round-the-clock customer support and other features.
Its significant competition so far is offered by banks such as JPMorgan Chase & Co., who are reportedly working on their blockchain software independently. BTCManager earlier reported that JPMorgan’s blockchain project tagged ‘Quorum’ might be separated from its parent company and spun off into a standalone business to help it compete better against R3 and other blockchain developers.