Banks join blockchain document platform
Written by Peter Walker
HSBC, ING, NatWest, Standard Chartered, BNP Paribas, SEB, Bangkok Bank and CTBC Holding have joined an open platform for document distribution over the blockchain.
The Voltron initiative is set to launch on R3’s Corda Enterprise blockchain platform in 2019, aiming to make transacting letters of credit significantly more efficient.
Corporate customers will be able to connect with their banks and trading partners via a single, simplified channel, for both issuance of letters of credit and presentation/exchange of documents across an open network.
In addition, trade documents produced on external networks by a corporate’s supply chain partners can be digitally sent, verified and processed in Voltron.
This new model provides legal enforceability of title documents and greater digitisation across business networks on Corda, addressing the challenge of ‘digital islands’ bridged by paper-based processes.
Banks’ corporate clients can reduce internal operational procedures through less reconciliation with their trading partners. To help lower barriers of adoption and create an open ecosystem, Voltron is working with four of the leading trade finance platform vendors to design and build a solution that will offer a service to their existing bank and corporate customers.
David E. Rutter, chief executive at R3, said today’s trade finance solutions were built in siloes, adding significant risk, operational inefficiencies and costs into the process.
“It is critical for banks and corporates to have the option to work with the technology partner of their choice, as this lowers barriers to adoption and helps drive widespread deployment of Voltron via our partners,” he added.