Modulus CEO: Bank of Jamaica Puts Island Nation on Fintech Map

  • Financial , People Moves
  • 14.07.2021 08:07 am

Last week, the Jamaica Observer proffered an article on the looming launch of Jamaica’s CBDC. The country’s pilot rollout is said to begin in August, after it was originally slated for this past May. The rollout is targeted to begin with National Commercial Bank, which the central bank is working with to further test the technology and the redeeming of digital currency.

“Jamaica seems to be taking a logical approach to execution. They were out ahead of the pack in terms of committing themselves to developing a central bank digital currency. But they made sure to wait until all the pieces were in place before officially beginning testing. That’s a smart move because naysayers will latch on to any imperfection when critiquing the system. It is better to go slower and do it right than rush a launch which is then riddled with problems,” said Richard Gardner, CEO of Modulus, a US-based developer of ultra-high-performance trading and surveillance technology that powers global equities, derivatives, and digital asset exchanges.

“Starting with a single bank should help, as well. It will allow them to test the actual technology, rather than dealing with the variable of implementation. Implementation will, of course, be a factor to consider, but that’s really step two. Beginning in September, the country plans to recruit other banks into the implementation process. It’s a structurally well-conceived plan,” opined Gardner.

“In September to December we'll be recruiting more of the banks to come on board and then we'll gradually expand the pilot out into a full-fledged launch of the CBDC,” said Bank of Jamaica Governor Richard Byles. He explained that the CBDC would solely be directly sold to licensed banks, DTIs, and other payment service providers authorized by the central bank.

“While the Bahamas may have been the first jurisdiction in the world to have launched a CBDC, I think that the forethought put into the development and the launch is really going to be a boon for Jamaica. Right now, one of the greatest struggles for digital assets is a lack of understanding by regulatory agencies. Jamaica has come to the table and laid out a quite pragmatic approach to how they plan to utilize blockchain technology to advance their financial sector. It is impressive,” noted Gardner.

Modulus is known throughout the financial technology segment as a leader in the development of ultra-high frequency trading systems and blockchain technologies. Over the past twenty years, the company has built technology for the world’s most notable exchanges, with a client list which includes NASA, NASDAQ, Goldman Sachs, Merrill Lynch, JP Morgan Chase, Bank of America, Barclays, Siemens, Shell, Yahoo!, Microsoft, Cornell University, and the University of Chicago.

Of course, in the end, most of the headlines will be about the implementation and the technology. But, assuming that it performs as they expect, Jamaica could have set themselves up to market themselves as a forward-thinking haven for financial technologies, as well as the companies that participate in the segment. If the rollout is done well, and the coordination with the private sector is successful, it is definitely something which fintech firms are going to keep an eye on,” said Gardner.

Related News