Blockstream launches the Liquid Network sidechain

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Wednesday, October 10, 2018

Blockstream, the blockchain technology, and financial cryptography infrastructure company today announced the launch of the Liquid Network, an inter-exchange settlement network connecting cryptocurrency exchanges, market makers, brokers, and financial institutions. Liquid is a sidechain built on the Bitcoin network, facilitating faster bitcoin transactions between businesses and individuals, while enabling extended functionality.

The Liquid blockchain went live on September 27, 2018 at 1:29 UTC with 23 of some of the cryptocurrency exchanges participating in the launch as Liquid members, including Altonomy, Atlantic Financial, Bitbank, Bitfinex, Bitmax, BitMEX, Bitso, BTCBOX, DGroup, Coinone, Crypto Garage, GOPAX, Korbit, L2B Global, OKCoin, The Rock Trading, SIX Digital Exchange, Unocoin, Xapo, XBTO, and Zaif. Together, these members manage the Liquid Network, ensuring users’ assets are protected through a geographically diverse federation, with no single point of failure.

“It’s been a long road for us to take Liquid from concept to commercial product. While still at BTCC, I was one of the first supporters of Liquid because I saw the potential of the network and technology for the cryptocurrency industry. It’s exciting to see the Liquid team deliver on that promise. Now our focus is to build out the Liquid Network ecosystem with more integrations, mobile wallets, and next-generation functionary hardware.”

Samson Mow, Chief Strategy Officer of Blockstream and former COO at bitcoin exchange BTCC

“If there’s one thing our traders need, it’s speed. Liquid delivers that in spades. Liquid’s instant settlements will allow our traders to achieve faster bitcoin deposits and withdrawals, more efficient arbitrage, and even better pricing though tighter spreads.”

Paolo Ardoino, CTO of Bitfinex
Some of the features of Liquid include:

Liquid’s native Liquid Bitcoin (L-BTC) asset is backed by a two-way peg to Bitcoin (BTC) and can be redeemed at any time, providing institutions and end users with a secure and rapid way to transfer bitcoin between members with full settlement in two minutes. Liquid’s Issued Assets brings bitcoin-like features to traditional assets, such as tokenized fiat, digital reward points, and attested assets (e.g. gold coins), removing the need for dedicated blockchains or wallet software. Blockstream’s Confidential Transaction technology ensures that the amount and asset type transferred are known only to the transacting parties, enhancing the privacy of both L-BTC and Issued Asset transactions.

“The success of the launch has been thanks to the organized efforts of the network’s members and represents just the beginning, with numerous features and applications in the works to expand participation in the network. These include GreenAddress wallet integration, an all-new open source Liquid Wallet client, and plans for third-party hardware wallet support from Ledger and Trezor. Liquid paves the way for trustless exchange. In the future, traders will be able to place a limit order as a partially signed transaction, which is only spendable if paired with a transaction paying the asking price. The exchange would have no custody, so if someone broke in there would be no coins to steal. Liquid is a game changer for digital asset traders.”

Dr. Adam Back, CEO and co-founder of Blockstream

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