The organization behind most of the world’s cross-border money and security transfers is deploying a blockchain proof-of-concept (PoC) for clients’ shareholders to use in electronic voting.

SWIFT said this week it will jointly conduct the PoC in the Asia Pacific region with securities software provider SLIB and the Singapore Exchange (SGX), along with Deutsche Bank, DBS Bank, HSBC Holdings and Standard Chartered Bank.

“Shareholder voice in corporate decision-making is stifled by the existing paper-based voting process. Technology is the solution to enhancing shareholder say,” Tony Lewis, head of Securities Services at HSBC, said in a statement. “E-Voting using [distributed ledger technology (DLT)] has the potential to create greater efficiencies, transparency and participation.”

SWIFT has previously carried out DLT PoCs around Nostro Vostro account reconciliation (bank-to-bank account transfers), as well as serving as a potential connector allowing DLT and other e-commerce and trading platforms to use SWIFT’s global payments innovation network (gpi).

“We continue to explore a wide range of new and emerging technologies to best meet the needs of our customers, including the use of APIs that provide rapid cross-border payments on SWIFT gpi,” a SWIFT spokesperson said via email.

SWIFT is among a groundswell of financial services firms testing blockchain as a more efficient and transparent way of conducting cross-border financial transactions, unhampered by much of the regulatory oversight to which current networks must adhere.

SWIFT may also be feeling pressure as more and more firms in financial services pilot, or outright adopt, DLT technology.

“There is a lot of competition now,” said Avivah Litan, Gartner vice president of research. “If you think about SWIFT, it was just a big banking network that moved money quickly and authenticated users, but it costs a lot to do that. And now there are competing initiatives using blockchain.”

(Excerpt) Read more Here | 2019-03-08 22:20:45
Image credit: source

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