Who Runs Cardano?

October 12, 2021 by Varderes Barsegyan ‐ 4 min read

Mother Teresa: I can do things you cannot; you can do things I cannot; together we can do great things.

Input|Output Global, Cardano Foundation and EMURGO

Cardano has experienced unprecedented growth in 2021, establishing itself as one of largest cryptocurrencies by market cap. Since its inception in 2015, the underlying blockchain has been released, global partnerships have been established and a vibrant community has come together to support the development and adoption of Cardano.

There are three key entities that have played a critical role in Cardano’s growth:

These organizations are unified under the mission of advancing Cardano to the globe and solidifying it as the most accessible, scalable and sustainable blockchain infrastructure ever created. We will explore each of these organizations and give an overview of their key roles in fulfilling this mission.

Input|Output Global (IOG)


IOG was founded by Charles Hoskinson and Jeremy Wood–co-creators of Ethereum–in 2015.

Established in Hong Kong and initially named Input|Output Hong Kong (IOHK), they set out to create the world’s most impactful blockchain technology company, with a deep commitment to academic rigour and world-class software engineering. They are responsible for the research and development of the Cardano blockchain itself, the Daedalus wallet as a custody of ADA and other native assets, and Atala PRISM for decentralized digital identity solutions.

Their technologies are built with the following principle in mind: cascading disruption. This means building systems that not only increment on existing approaches and innovations, but fundamentally change how we think about the interfaces between the digital world, governments and economies.

Researchers at IOG have collaborated with academic institutions across the globe to push the boundaries of Cardano’s blockchain. Most notably, they have partnered with the Wyoming Advanced Blockchain Lab to help them continuously improve the scalability, sustainability and security of Cardano. Thus, IOG is a truly global organization, with 400+ employees across 50+ countries committed to making Cardano accessible to everyone!

Connecting with IOG

Cardano Foundation


Founded in 2016, The Cardano Foundation (CF) is a non-profit based out of Switzerland focused on advancing Cardano to the entire world. Like IOG, CF is a global entity with participants from over 25 countries who work together to achieve the following goals:

  • Driving adoption of Cardano
  • Shaping legislation and commercial standards
  • Growing the global Cardano community
  • Ensuring stakeholder accountability

For blockchain and Cardano to become ubiquitous, the world must first be aware of its existence and potential. Once global leaders are aware and convinced, legacy systems must be integrated onto Cardano’s blockchain. Finally, new partnerships must be established to build innovative systems that use Cardano natively. CF is responsible for finding these partnerships and defining projects for IOG.

One of the most notable partnerships for Cardano thus far is Cardano Africa 2021. The first phase of this project will enable Ethiopia’s Ministry of Education to create digital identities for over 5 million students and teachers using IOG’s Atala PRISM technology! This will then expand into other African countries and eventually other continents.

It’s worth checking out the new partnerships recently announced at Cardano Summit 2021. There are simply too many to list here!

Connecting with The Cardano Foundation



While Cardano Foundation focuses on global adaptation and standardization, EMURGO builds business-to-business (B2B) and commercial solutions across multiple sectors of the global economy: healthcare, IoT, and supply chain, to name a few. They are also responsible for creating educational and training programs for companies and institutions. Finally, they are creators of the Yoroi wallet, currently the most popular ADA wallet.

EMURGO has also started an incubation program to invest in startups social programmes powered by the Cardano blockchain. This will be composed of two entities: EMURGO Africa and EMURGO Ventures. The former will support African startups and push Cardano to become the continent’s premier technological platform, and the latter will focus on developed markets across the globe.

Connecting with EMURGO

Working together to build a better world

IOG, Cardano Foundation and EMURGO are strategically partnered to develop and advance Cardano efficiently and effectively. Builders can focus on building and evangelists can focus on global adoption and integration. Each of these entities plays a distinct, yet complimentary role in the process of establishing Cardano as the world’s financial operating system!

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