Vijay Mayadas, Broadridge
New York - Broadridge Financial Solutions, J.P. Morgan, Northern Trust and Banco Santander have announced the completion of a pilot which employs a blockchain technology to enhance global proxy vote transparency and analytics.
The pilot, Broadridge's first application of blockchain technology, provides transparency by adapting distributed ledger technology capabilities to provide daily insight into vote progress throughout the issuer's proxy voting period, from meeting announcement date to the annual general meeting. The application enables role-based access to voting data through use of cryptography and smart contract technology and is built on an Ethereum blockchain platform.
"This pilot demonstrates Broadridge's commitment to developing innovative technology solutions to enhance transparency in the global proxy voting process for the mutual benefit of all stakeholders, ultimately improving corporate governance for all," said Vijay Mayadas, Senior Vice President and Global Head of Corporate Strategy at Broadridge. "We believe blockchain will drive increased quality and efficiency in the voting chain by reducing complexity that exists within the process today," he added.
Julio Faura, head of the Blockchain Lab at Banco Santander, said "After piloting this blockchain-based platform with Broadridge, we see that proxy voting makes an interesting case where distributed ledgers and smart contracts can add transparency and efficiency to financial services, to the benefit of our corporate and institutional clients."
The pilot was run in support of a corporate issuer's annual general meeting (AGM) and included participation of Santander Investment, the issuer's agent. The pilot was run in parallel of the AGM, with the blockchain being utilized to produce a "shadow" digital register of the proxy voting taking place in the traditional model.