The team behind the New Economy Movement blockchain, the NEM Group, have launched a new, business-enterprise-facing project today called Symbol.

Symbol is a proof-of-stake blockchain with its own token (XYM) the NEM Group is marketing as an enterprise blockchain solution for fintech, supply chains and everything in between. On Symbol’s public blockchain, PoS validators can stake a supernode with their XYM or stake their tokens in another supernode’s pool.

“We believe we are going to see a lot of flexibility in how people use these private and public networks together. You can think of your private network as something of staging area and platform for public network. We’re excited to see what comes out of that,” NEM Software CTO Kristy-Leigh Minehan told CoinDesk.

The platform will allow business to launch their own private blockchains, which can interoperate with Symbol’s public chain. Additionally, the NEM team told CoinDesk, Symbol will support “atomic swaps” to transfer data and coins between different blockchains.

Atomic swaps are an old cryptographic trick that originated from Bitcoin which allow two blockchains to transfer data (typically, a coin) without the need for an intermediary to escrow the trade.

Tokens and DeFi applications

NEM’s Symbol can accommodate the hot DeFi applications of Ethereum fame and the rest like securities tokens and NFTs, Minehan said, using tokens called mosaics. She said that one Kentucky whiskey company has used these mosaics to tokenize barrels of whiskey that only approved buyers can purchase.

For something like NFTs, Minehan said that the next step is “having a digitization of the underlying asset [like a jpeg] embedded in the transaction itself,” which requires storing a significant amount of data on-chain.

NEM is also generally focused on making Symbol “the platform for tokens out in the space,” she said (emphasis hers), be they NFTs, whiskey barrels, CBDs, or stablecoins, and she emphasize that the team’s focus with Symbol will be trying to bridge the public-private blockchain gap.

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