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Symbiont Announces Strategic Investment from Medici Ventures

Two months ago, Symbiont announced an undisclosed strategic investment from China’s Hundsun Technologies. At the time, Symbiont CEO Mark Smith called the investment “a clear vote of confidence” from a “strong partner in Asia.”

Last week we learned that the votes of confidence are still coming in. Blockchain technology investor Medici Ventures has teamed up with Symbiont, providing strategic investment to the company and announcing a collaboration involving both Medici and its parent company Overstock.com. The partnership will enable Medici Ventures to become the first company to register corporate ownership shares using the blockchain.

Pledging to deliver “best-in-class investor transparency,” Jonathan Johnson, President of Medici Ventures and Overstock.com Director, said, “We also anticipate using blockchain to administer Medici Ventures’ fund interests from inception, thereby providing our investors with end-to-end recordkeeping on a blockchain and administration of investor interests using smart contracts.”

Pictured: Adam Krellenstein, Symbiont CTO and co-founder, discussing “Distributed Ledgers and Smart Contracts,” during his presentation at FinDEVr New York 2016.

Symbiont’s Smith highlighted investor interests as a major use case for his company’s technology. “Management of fund interests is a logical extension of Symbiont’s Smart Securities capabilities,” he said, “and we welcome a partner that is equally committed to the principle of ensuring accuracy of shareholder records at all times during a company’s life cycle.”

The issue was explained in more detail by Overstock CEO and founder Patrick Byrne. He called the process of signing over personal ownership of shares received in the IPO process “a Faustian bargain” for entrepreneurs. He praised Delaware for pioneering registration of ownership shares using blockchain technology. “Delaware is giving entrepreneurs a path to retaining direct ownership of their shares after their IPOs, Byrne said. “Thanks to Delaware, accuracy in securities ownership records can be achieved.”

Symbiont’s blockchain-based technology enables easy-to-understand modeling of complex financial instruments and fully digitizing those instruments into a distributed ledger. The company’s Smart Security technology avoids error-prone manual processes and tampering while increasing transparency, reducing risks, and enabling participants to share ledger statuses and updates. The technology also helps companies save on back and middle office costs.

Founded in 2015, Symbiont is based in New York City. The company is an alum of our developer’s conference, having presented “Distributed Ledgers and Smart Contracts” at FinDEVr New York 2016.