Japan’s SBI Holdings launches blockchain consortium

Japanese financial services firm SBI Holdings is launching a consortium alongside its subsidiary SBI Ripple Asia to explore the usage of blockchain in domestic and foreign exchange services.

Named the Consortium for Considering Using Blockchain Technology to Centrally Provide Domestic and Foreign Exchange Services, the firm says that inaugural members will include the Bank of Yokohama and SBI Sumishin Net Bank.

It’s reported that the total number of banks participating as inaugural members in October 2016 will reach 15, but that number is expected to double to 30 by March next year.

The firm says the consortium will begin to consider new types of payment and settlement services that utilise blockchain technology in order to address 24-hour and real-time settlement, remittances and cross-border e-commerce.

Japanese companies are playing a big role in the blockchain and bitcoin space recently with the country boosting confidence in digital currency by passing legislation in May demanding digital currency exchanges improve their financial foundations and report any suspicious trading to Financial Services Agency.

Elsewhere regional web firm Rakuten acquired bitcoin payment startup Bitnet to set up a blockchain research lab in Belfast.

Copyright © 2016 FINTECH GLOBAL

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