In an unprecedented move, two of the worlds biggest blockchain consortiums, Enterprise Ethereum Alliance (EEA) and Linux Foundation’s Hyperledger Project have joined forces to excel the adoption of blockchain technology in the enterprise sector.
Announced in a jointly authored news release by Hyperledger Executive Director, Brian Behlendorf, and EEA Executive Director, Ron Resnick, the two confirmed that they have agreed to collaborate and are formally joining each other’s organisations as Associate Members, stating:
“The collaboration between our organisations will further accelerate adoption of blockchain technologies for business.”
The EEA, launched in early 2017, swiftly grew to become the world’s largest blockchain consortium with over 500 enterprise-grade members, including state governments, that all comply and work towards a common standard for enterprise networks leveraging Ethereum blockchain technology.
Now with this new partnered approach, these two highly influential enterprise blockchain communities aim to create a common standard between the two protocols, and address the concerns surrounding interoperability. EEA‘s, Resnick said:
“The enterprises of the world are going to want to purchase solutions where they have a choice of multiple vendors.”
The intention is to alleviate the pressure on enterprises that are undecided upon which protocol to build their blockchain solutions, excluding of course those considering the third largest blockchain ecosystem that is R3’s Corda. Hyperledger‘s, Brian Behlendorf stated:
“Standards, specifications and certification all help enterprise blockchain customers commit to implementations with confidence, since they have better assurances of interoperability as well as multiple vendors of choice.”
Hyperledger, a cross-industry working group led by the open-source Linux Foundation, has seen vast growth and adoption in a broad variety of industries, especially since the release of it’s first production-ready blockchain software Hyperledger Fabric, which was spearheaded by it’s pioneering ambassador IBM.
The release goes to some length to highlight their previous collaborations, such as with Hyperledger Sawtooth (a codebase created by Intel) that added support for the Ethereum Virtual Machine (EVM) as a transaction processor. Dubbed “Seth”, it successfully enabled smart contracts developed for the public Ethereum blockchain to transition over to Sawtooth-based networks.
Through this collaboration, work to bring similar EVM support for Hyperledger‘s biggest protocol ‘Fabric’ is now under way, which much like Sawtooth, will also enable users to have Ethereum’s ERC-20 token model, that was widely adopted in the rise of ICOs.
Hyperledger developers will be able to write code that conforms to the EEA specification, and as stated in the release, it further intends to launch EEA certification testing programs for them in the second half of 2019. Hyperledger’s, Behlendorf stated:
“For anyone who ever put a ‘vs.’ between Ethereum and Hyperledger, this collaboration shows it’s now ‘Ethereum AND Hyperledger.”
“This is a logical next step that will strengthen the industry as a whole,”
As the third biggest competitor in the enterprise blockchain market, R3 have dismissed this move as a marketing ploy. EEA’s Resnick has said that he extended an invitation to the R3 consortium, however he went on to explain that as an ‘open-core’ protocol, R3 is different from Hyperledger or EEA that are ‘open-source’, he added:
“With a proprietary solution such as R3’s, you’ve got to buy stuff from them. That’s not what we are about and it’s not what Hyperledger is about,”
With more than 200 members and partners across multiple industries, R3 appears to be standing its ground, whether it joins in with these collaborative efforts is yet to be seen.