Nasdaq is using the technology that underpins bitcoin – the blockchain – to allow international residents of Estonia vote in shareholder meetings even when they're abroad, in a test that could have wider implications for the adoption of the technology.
Estonia offers e-Residency which is a transnational digital identity available to people who start a business online in the nation. But if those people own stock in an Estonian publically listed firm, they need to be physically present to vote in shareholder meetings or nominate someone else to do it for them, an arduous process.
But the Nasdaq, using blockchain technology, is hoping to change that.
Blockchain works like a huge, decentralized ledger for the digital currency bitcoin which records every transaction and stores this information on a global network so it cannot be tampered with. It's this technology that Nasdaq is now applying to shareholder votes.