ICICI Bank’s blockchain platform on-board over 250 corporates

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Mumbai, April 17 (IANS) Lending major ICICI Bank on Tuesday said it has successfully on-boarded over 250 corporates on its blockchain platform for domestic and international trade finance transactions.

The private sector bank said that with this, leading Indian corporates — including ones from the “S&P BSE 100 Index” — are now undertaking domestic/international trade finance transactions on its custom-made blockchain platform.

“This initiative marks another milestone in the bank’s pioneering role to promote blockchain in the banking industry in the country,” the bank said in a statement.

The statement said in August 2016, ICICI Bank became the first bank in the country and among the first few globally to successfully undertake pilot transactions in international trade finance and remittance in partnership with Emirates NBD.

“Since then, more than 250 corporates, including the country’s leading companies, have signed up on the bank’s blockchain application to experience a more time and cost efficient and secure way of undertaking domestic and international trade transactions,” it added.

According to the lending major, several Indian corporates have undertaken trade finance transactions of various types — that include cross-border remittance for salary payment to employees of a group company of an organisation, domestic vendor payments in another city and payments for raw materials to a domestic channel partner among many others — through the banks’s blockchain platform.

“We were the first in the country and among few globally to pioneer cross-border open account trade finance and remittance transactions on blockchain… I envision that the emerging technology of blockchain holds an immense potential to simplify the document-intensive trade transactions by bringing all stakeholders on a single platform,” said Chanda Kochhar, MD and CEO, ICICI Bank.

“In another initiative, we are also collaborating with peer banks and other partners to create a comprehensive ecosystem in the industry using blockchain and evolve common working standards to contribute to even greater adoption of this initiative,” she said.

The statement said the bank’s blockchain application digitises the paper-intensive international trade finance process as an electronic, distributed and unalterable ledger, and gives the participating entities including banks the ability to access a single source of information.

“It enables all the parties — buyers and sellers — across domestic and international locations, all branches and locations of ICICI Bank in the country and overseas, to view the data in real time,” said the statement.

“It also allows them to track documentation and authenticate ownership of assets digitally and execute a trade finance transaction through a series of encrypted and secure digital contracts,” it said.

Further, it allows each participant to check online the status of the application and transmission of original trade documents through a secure network, the statement added.



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