(Adds comment from TMX, paragraph 7)
By Ethan Lou
Nov 28 The first chief digital officer of TMX
Group Ltd's Toronto Stock Exchange (TSX) has left the
organization to devote more time to his venture based on
blockchain, the technology behind the bitcoin cryptocurrency,
the executive said on Monday.
Anthony Di Iorio, founder of the Bitcoin Alliance of Canada
and a co-founder of Ethereum, a blockchain-based computing
platform, was hired by Canada's largest stock exchange in
He left in September to focus on Jaxx, a universal "wallet"
for holding cryptocurrencies and "tokens" that facilitate
transactions in blockchain-based applications, Di Iorio said in
a phone interview.
Di Iorio's hire at TSX came as stock exchanges were
embracing blockchain, which allows Bitcoin users to conduct
secure transactions without middlemen, as they seek to diversify
and boost profit margins. When used to issue securities, the
technology could potentially remove the need for clearing
Jean Desgagne, chief executive of TMX's Global Enterprise
Services, said in March the technology could make operations
"better, faster, cheaper."
At the time, he declined to discuss specific potential uses
TSX may have for blockchain, a matter that is still unclear.
TMX said it no longer has someone using that title, and that
John Lee, a vice president of innovation and enterprise
delivery, is now leading development of "our capability in
emerging technologies, and exploring the potential of new areas
such as blockchain."
Blockchain's distributed-ledger system allows users to
conduct secure transactions with each other without the need for
middlemen or central oversight. While long associated with
cryptocurrencies such as bitcoin, blockchain can also be used
for running applications with a wide range of purposes.
Users usually need separate wallet programs to hold
different cryptocurrencies and tokens for applications built on
blockchain. Jaxx, launched in February, seeks to eliminate that
"Jaxx really started taking off over the past months, and
that's really where my passion is," Di Iorio said. "I prioritize
the things that are really important to me, and that's the No. 1
Di Iorio said he and TSX parted on good terms. He declined
to elaborate on the stock exchange's plans with regard to
In January the Australian stock exchange said it had
enlisted a blockchain startup to develop a new trade settlement
Nasdaq in the United States used the technology
last year to issue securities to an unidentified private
investor. In February, Nasdaq said it was developing a
blockchain-based shareholder voting system for its Estonian
(Reporting by Ethan Lou in Calgary, Alberta; Additional
reporting by Alastair Sharp in Toronto; Editing by Lisa Shumaker
and Paul Tait)