Blockchain Startup Chain Acquired by Lightyear, Moves Business to Stellar Protocol

News and Analysis

San Francisco-based technology startup Chain Inc. has been acquired by Lightyear Corp., with two companies forming a new entity called Interstellar. As reported by Reuters, Interstellar will migrate Chain’s customer base and products onto Stellar’s public ledger, creating a platform that will enable organizations to issue, exchange and manage digital assets.

Chain Chief Executive officer Adam Ludwin said:

“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.”

According to Ludwin, when Chain started several years ago the company’s “customers were not ready for a public network.”

“Fast forward to three years, they’re willingness has gone up, and the maturity of the public networks has changed a lot,” he added.

Chain raised more than $40 million from companies such as Visa, Citi Ventures and Nasdaq. Ludwin declined to disclose financial details of the acquisition, but said Chain investors were cashed out. The transaction closed last week in negotiations that started late last year.

“The deal turned out to be a very good outcome for our investors,” insists Ludwin.

Earlier this year Fortune suggested that the deal could be valued as much as $500 million in Stellar Lumens (XLM).

Under the terms of the deal, the Chain and Lightyear brands will be retired. Adam Ludwin will be the new company’s CEO, while Jed McCaleb, co-founder of Stellar Development Foundation and Lightyear, will be the chief technology officer.

Interstellar will employ 60 people with headquarters in San Francisco and an office in New York City.

Interstellar’s product portfolio will also include StellarX, a recently announced marketplace for trading assets on Stellar. StellarX is currently in beta phase and will launch to the public soon.

Chain is not the only project that recently decided to move processes onto Stellar blockchain. Last December SatoshiPay, a micropayments platform, moved to Stellar after concluding that Bitcoin payments were too expensive for its purposes. As SatoshiPay’s CEO Meinhard Benn told ForkLog, they needed “many fast and cheap transactions” and Stellar was the best and most practical solution.

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