FinTech Connects… with Gilbert Verdian, CEO and Founder, Quant Network

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FinTech Connect chats with Gilbert Verdian CEO and Founder of blockchain technology company Quant Network. Tasked with connecting the world’s networks to blockchain, Gilbert is building the Internet of Trust by converging blockchain, AI and cybersecurity. Having a keen interest in disruptive technology, Gilbert is the author behind the Blockchain ISO Standard TC307 initiative and is the Chair of the UK’s national committee on Blockchain and Distributed Ledger technologies (DLT/1) as well as the Interoperability working group for ISO. He also sits on committees in the Federal Reserve, the EU’s Blockchain Observatory, PayUK’s Cybersecurity board and UK Government’s DLT committees. 

He’s actively working to advance technology in the areas of AI, Cybersecurity, Blockchain, Fintech & Health.

Gilbert will be delivering a keynote at Blockchain Connect on December 3rd as part of this year’s FinTech Connect.


For those who are not aware, what does Quant do?

Quant solves one of the biggest pain points in FS, that is the ability to work with different technologies in blockchain. The industry loves blockchain and this technology is able to create new types of products and service offerings and it allows you to do that safely with trust.

However, the problem that everyone has is the dilemma of which blockchain technology to use. Then they have limitations so, they will be locked into a particular blockchain technology, vendor or simply don’t have the right skills to implement blockchain. Subsequently, we've simplified the adoption and implementation of any blockchain, allowing any Financial Services Institution and enterprise to use different types of blockchain with just three lines of code and benefit from the combined features of different technologies. Furthermore, we are working across financial infrastructure with payments and settlement, Capital Markets to move digital assets and tokenised securities in the US and starting work with Central Banks across digital assets. We're in the middle of shaping the financial system of future.


What can you tell us about the Overledger OS?

The concept of Overledger was to solve the problem of disparate enterprise data across different systems and jurisdictions. The challenge, as an industry was that we were making the same mistakes of the past, creating technologies in isolation. We set out to solve this early on, initially tackling the problem by creating Standards, by establishing the Blockchain ISO Standard TC307 in 2015 then building our technology in 2017.

We have built the world’s first blockchain operating system which interconnects blockchains and existing enterprise platforms, solving interoperability at scale. We removed the barriers for enterprise adoption of blockchain, by giving clients the choice to use any supported blockchain without the challenges of vendor and tech lock-in, lack of interoperability and the freedom to use the best features of different chains in combination.


There has been an incredible amount of hype around blockchain over the past 5 years, where do you think the FS industry currently stands?

The industry has matured hugely in the last 2 years. We’ve moved on from the pilot and experimentation stage to actual implementation within financial systems.

We’ve seen the mass adoption of Digital Assets and the benefits of tokenization and fractionalization as well as created new opportunities and liquidity in asset classes. This is all of course, supported by regulation which has now caught up and is allowing for an environment of innovation. 


Do you think the Financial Services are at a point where it is overcoming challenges and hesitation to implement blockchain at scale?

I think in 2019 we had an inflection point in financial services. So much technology was built and implemented, passing the tests of pilots and prototypes. We’re seeing implementations of blockchain technologies within products and services, being used by customers and not having to know anything about blockchains or digital assets.


Can you tell me more on Overledger Network and its key applications you see for blockchain in financial services?

Public (Permissionless)Blockchains and the underlying nodes have been challenging to implement within enterprise networks. The core of the technology is a peer-2-peer network which anyone can connect and access all participants of the network. These were the very same challenges that plagued corporate security teams during the early 2000’s when the protocols of Napster and Bittorrent invaded their networks,

We can transform industries by creating a secure layer between them – at scale.  We want organisations to have choice and openness. Therefore, we have to focus on interoperability so that different industries can transact securely. It’s the mandatory step for technology innovation where close networks are open up and innovation happens. It was only when close proprietary internet networks and walled gardens from the likes of Compuserve and AOL were opened, resulted in the internet of today which created the Google’s and Amazons of the world. Society operates in open networks to communicate, transact and trade, this should be the same for blockchains.

The Overledger Network is the Network of Networks which allows for enterprises to safely host their own gateways to access all blockchains while complying to security and regulatory requirements and having access to new markets through the hyper-connected network.


What role does interoperability have in financial services of the future?

One of the biggest barriers for financial services has been the uncertainty of which blockchain to use and if you pick one, how do you avoid lock-in and migrate to other technologies when you need to.

Universal Interoperability is the key requirement to enable mass implementation of the technology and provide financial institutions the ability to freely trade and send financial transactions across borders and networks. This opens up the financial system, providing market access globally to gain new customers and expand products to new marketplaces.

The walled gardens of old cannot accommodate the decentralized world we are heading towards, where every stakeholder and participant can have friction access to each other to create value.


What examples of blockchain implementation are you impressed with?

We’ve seen a lot of impressive use cases in the last year. The convergence of IoT/5G, AI and Blockchain has created a world of possibilities. We’re seeing early glimpses of what is done when autonomous decisions are made by machines, transacting with value and money to better serve people. I’m impressed by the use of Blockchain for AI to securely access big data sets to authenticate and authorize plus rewarding participation. The European Space Agency have taken this approach to use blockchain to access large images datasets using blockchain.


What can we hear from your keynote?

We’re revealing real world use cases and solutions that Financial Services has been missing. We’re excited to show cross-chain atomic swaps and delivery vs payment which powers capital markets and financial infrastructure globally.


Quant Network is a technology provider enabling trusted digital interaction, helping create a secure digital future to the benefit of enterprises, regulators, governments, and individuals. Recognised for having solved interoperability through the creation of the world’s first blockchain operating system Overledger, Quant Network is leading the way for innovation and blockchain adoption across enterprise. Headquartered in London, UK, Quant Network is committed to building an internet people can trust.


Register for FinTech Connect on 3–4 December at ExCeL, London.