abrdn is the largest asset manager in the UK investing in real estate, private markets, fixed income and equities. In 2022 they generated £1.4 billion in turn over last year and a profit of $263,000,000! On October 6th 2022 ABRDN joined the Hedera Governing Council! In this article we wish to explore this relationship as it ultimately highlights the use of DLT in the ‘real world’ with hedera at the helm of this transformative technology!
Who are ABRDN:
Abrdn plc, presented as ‘abrdn’ through a unique stylized spelling of ‘Aberdeen,’ was formerly known as Standard Life Aberdeen plc. This globally operating investment company is headquartered in Edinburgh, Scotland, and is publicly traded on the London Stock Exchange. It holds a position as a constituent of the FTSE 250 Index.
Abrdn stands as the largest active asset manager in the United Kingdom, managing investments across various asset classes, including equities, multi-asset portfolios, fixed income instruments, liquidity funds, sovereign wealth assets, real estate holdings, and private markets. In July 2021, the company underwent a name change from Standard Life Aberdeen to Abrdn. The company’s registered office is located at 1 George Street in Edinburgh.
it’s estimated to have £376 billion pounds under management with nearly 5,000 employees!
What is hedera’s governing council:
Up to 39 collusion-resistant organizations lead the Hedera network. Each Council member is committed to network innovation, stability, and its continued decentralization. These council members are responsible for the nodes that run the hedera DAG and also vote on the future of Hedera like the recent decrease in staking rewards from 6.5% down to 2.5%. Right now there are 29 members but up to 39 members can have a seat on the council. We see some of the largest companies in the world on the council such as Google, Dell, LG, Boeing and many more!
From the ABRDN website on the announcement – “abrdn has today (06/10/2022) joined the Governing Council of distributed ledger technology (DLT) firm Hedera, becoming the first buy-side finance and asset management company on the Council. The group already includes a number of leading global firms, including banks, law firms, technology and communications companies.”
The Senior Investment Manager over at abrdn, Duncan Moir Commented on the matter:
“Becoming the first asset manager to be accepted on to the Hedera Governing Council further strengthens abrdn’s position as a leader in the development of the digital asset ecosystem. We chose to join a number of leading global organisations on the Hedera Governing Council because Hedera’s emphasis on strong governance, innovation, and sustainability aligns closely with our values. With rapid speed and Asynchronous Byzantine Fault Tolerance (ABFT) security, Hedera offers a highly promising DLT solution for the fund management industry and we look forward to joining them on their journey“
Co-chair of the membership committee for hedera Governing Council, Bill Miller Commented on the announcement:
“The client-first mission at abrdn aligns with Hedera’s goal of bridging the resources of enterprises with the innovative capabilities of Web3, enabling users to benefit from a DLT infrastructure that maximises efficiency. As abrdn leads the investment industry’s move into tokenised assets, the Hedera network provides them with the underlying technology to overcome barriers and offer an increasingly sophisticated experience to their clients, who pay for the layers of services that contribute to managing their assets.“
On the 30th of august 2023, Max Walker-Williams from Walker and Williams released a interview with Duncan Moir From abrdn about his views on Hedera, being a governing council member, how they are using hedera and his general views on ‘crypto’!
Around 3:00 minutes into the interview Max asks Duncan about anything in the pipeline for furthering the use of Hedera and his response was:
“We are working on a range of things but we are really trying to dial in a framework to go and build use cases on Hedera outside of the council members”
Max dives in deeper asking what that ‘framework’ looks like in real terms, Duncan continues to elaborate with:
“It’s early days but what I think we need to do is really focus on pulling in relevant stake holders that are crucial to a new use case. Right now we talk a lot about the council members and their use cases but its difficult to do something in isolation, you really need to work with third parties and so you want to focus on that very specific theme that Hedera is targeting be it on chain finance be it sustainability and look at the key players that are needed to bring a real use case to life”
Around 6:11 Max asked Duncan about his role as a Hedera governing council member his response:
“I think for everybody, its you get out what you put in and it’s not a small thing for a large traditional finance asset manager to be this involved with a dlt and because we’ve made that commitment I want to shot the commitment we have made to Hedera. So its a lot of governance, a lot of meetings on committee meeting on a range of things, new memberships use cases, finance and working with my colleagues and the other council members.”
When asked if abrdn have a use case at the moment on hedera Duncan’s response was:
“Our main use case is tokenization and I guess that’s what it would be the same for a lot of asset managers. So our archax a portfolio company of aberdeen who are a UK regulated digital security’s exchange, crypto exchange and custodian tokenize their investments in our money markets fund probably four five weeks ago lets say, we have a distribution agreement with them to allow them to go and sell that so they can offer tokenized money markets in sterling and soon in dollar and euro to investor through their venue and we are going to expand that and we’re going to do true securitization as well where tokens on our mutual funds will trade on a secondary market basis through regulated exchanges”.
He goes onto break this down into this potentially making markets that institutional investors only have access to due to big ticket sizes potentially being able to be fractionalised and offered to retail customers! This is currently live through archax!
Hedera is quickly becoming one of our favourite ‘cryptos’ it offers a unique set of services and capabilities due to its DAG protocol that many blockchain without the use of complex layer 2s simple cannot! On top of that hedera’s governing council happen to be some of the largest companies in the world and they are all working toward the usage of hedera and its ecosystem! this puts hedera at the heart of this technological revolution that bitcoin spawned and we look forward to following hedera on its journey. Abrdn membership on the council is yet another sign that hedera is the choice for large financial players given its uniqueness and proves that it is well positioned! Stay tuned to allincrypto.com for more updates on Hedera!