Last summer, Fabian Vogelsteller from the Ethereal Project spoke about potential blockchain applications at the Tech Open Air conference in Berlin. He said that in the next five years we will see the rise of an “internet of blockchains” focussing on specific verticals or needs, such as industries as well as private blockchains within companies.
It seems the countdown has begun as ING has revealed that one if its teams has been working on 27 proofs of concept. Led by Mariana Gomes de la Villa, Senior Program Manager Blockchain, and her Amsterdam-based Blockchain Innovation team, the goal was to find practical applications for blockchain that would benefit the whole financial ecosystem.
“For us, 2016 was about experimentation and getting to know the technology: how it works, how we can use it and what the pitfalls and limitations are. This technology wasn’t built for the financial industry so there are constraints and it doesn’t always cover our requirements,” Gomes de la Villa said.
The team focussed on six areas of business: payments, trade finance, compliance and identity, lending as well as financial markets and bank treasury. One application targeted the know-your-customer process (KYC). With blockchain, ING said customers only had to submit identity documents just once as opposed to every single time they opened a new account. The bank said blockchain had the potential to reduce operational and compliance costs by as much as 15%. It could also increase bank revenue by the same amount.
However, the bank tempered any excitement by pointing out that because of the vast amounts of compliance and understanding required, it will be some time before blockchain becomes and everyday part of the payments ecosystem.
“Each solution should comply with many more areas: performance and scalability, the regulatory and legal framework, privacy and confidentiality. That’s also why collaboration with the business and external partners is so important,” Gomes de la Villa added.
Interview: “Not participating in immediate payments will be detrimental to a bank’s competitiveness”
This year, real-time payments are advancing in the US and Europe. Global financial services provider D+H has been working closely with the banks to help them prepare for this change. PaymentEye sat down with Moti Porath, Head of Product Management, Global Payments Solutions at D+H, to find out how the adoption of instant payments will affect the payments landscapes in these markets.
Brought to you in partnership with D+H: In a world where a global mobile network enables instant communication and delivery of online services, consumers have grown to expect immediate payments – an overnight wait for authorisation isn’t good enough. How should banks respond?
Eastern Europe is still very much a region finding its identity following the breakdown of the Soviet Union over 20 years ago. Countries in the region are at various stages of economic growth and payments infrastructure development, and the e-commerce landscape looks different as you cross borders.
A new report published by Earnix shows findings stating that most millennials will use a single portal to aggregate services from multiple banks with which they have existing customer relationships in the future. The report, The Role of Analytics in the New Banking Age 2017, also states that most banks believe predictive analytics and machine learning will become the most powerful way to win back customers over the next five years.