5 ideas from Sergey Gorbunov on blockchain interoperability

  • Sergey Gorbunov, CEO of Interop Labs and co-founder of Axelar Protocol, appeared on The Protocol Podcast.
  • Gorbunov discussed the partnership with Ripple, security in blockchain, and the programmability of Axelar.

In a recent episode of the CoinDesk Podcast on ART19, Sergey Gorbunov, CEO of Interop Labs and co-founder of Axelar Protocol, shared his expertise on blockchain interoperability. The 29-min discussion delved into the security measures, programmability, and the significance of decentralisation in blockchain protocols. Here, we’ve distilled his 5 most intriguing insights.

1. The importance of security in blockchain

Sergey Gorbunov highlighted that one of Axelar’s core differentiators is its strong emphasis on security. Unlike early interoperability attempts that resulted in over $2 billion in hacks due to insecure solutions, Axelar prioritises a fully permissionless and decentralised proof-of-stake protocol. This approach ensures robust security and prevents the centralisation that often leads to vulnerabilities .

2. Programmability sets Axelar apart

Axelar’s programmability allows developers to build their own connections within the interoperability stack. Gorbunov compared this to the open architecture of TCP/IP, which became the foundation of the modern internet. By providing a framework where anyone can extend and program their logic, Axelar facilitates a more flexible and scalable ecosystem for blockchain development .

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3. Ripple partnership and the exclusive bridge

Gorbunov discussed the recent partnership with Ripple to create the exclusive bridge for the XRP Ledger’s new EVM sidechain. This collaboration aims to enhance connectivity and liquidity across different blockchain ecosystems. While the protocol remains open and permissionless, the go-to-market strategy includes such exclusive agreements to streamline integration and foster strategic growth .

4. Decentralisation as a cornerstone

Decentralisation is a fundamental principle for Axelar. Gorbunov stressed that a truly decentralised network is crucial for achieving secure and reliable cross-chain interactions. This principle ensures that no single entity can control the network, thereby maintaining trust and integrity within the blockchain community .

5. User experience and traditional systems integration

Simplifying user experiences is another key focus for Axelar. Gorbunov mentioned the importance of making blockchain technology more accessible by integrating it seamlessly with traditional systems. This approach not only enhances usability but also bridges the gap between emerging technologies and established infrastructures .


Doris Du

Doris Du is an intern reporter at BTW Media. She graduated with a master's degree in Translating and Interpreting from The Hong Kong Polytechnic University. Send tips to d.du@btw.media.

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