XBRL Reporting Standard Co-Founder Joins Blockchain Startup

28 November 2017

Blockchain startup Auditchain has added the co-founder of a widely used business reporting standard to its leadership team.

The new hire, Eric Cohen, will serve as head of XBRL architecture for the New York-based firm, as announced today at CoinDesk’s Consensus: Invest event.

Auditchain is developing an accounting ecosystem centered around blockchain-based tokens, and utilizing one of its own (called AUDT) that will serve as a means to access and pay for services.

Cohen is perhaps best known as the co-founder of XBRL, a reporting standard required by business regulators like the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission and similar agencies in Europe and abroad. He also spent more than 17 years working for professional services firm PwC.

Auditchain co-founder Jason Meyers told CoinDesk that Cohen’s involvement traces back to an event at Rutgers University that focused on continuous auditing.

“I was ecstatic when I met him, and for him to join us totally vindicates what we’re doing,” he said.

In an email to CoinDesk, Cohen framed his work with blockchain as part of a broader, decades-long focus on auditing technology.

“Leveraging [blockchain]/DLT technologies to provide a fantastic new foundation, enabled by layers of abstraction, can enable new payment channels, and securely hook in resources of all sorts,” he wrote, adding:

“It’s really not new theory; it goes back to the 60s, just fleshing out the tools that makes it practical. “

That Cohen would link up with Auditchain is perhaps unsurprising, given his stated interest in blockchain technology and related commentary on platforms like Twitter.

According to his personal website, Cohen has also played a role in the development of standards around blockchain, including an ongoing effort spearheaded by the International Organization for Standardization (ISO).

Accountant miniature image via Shutterstock