Barclays Bank and Citibank are two of the big firms associated with a new blockchain trial managed by tech giants, IBM.IBM are no strangers to blockchain technology, after building up an entire research focus based around blockchain technology, this latest development see’s a number of well established financial service providers working alongside IBM to pilot new blockchain trails that could in turn help to see the likes of Barclays Bank and Citibank further explore the potential that cryptocurrency has to offer their companies. According to reports, in partnership with FOREX infrastructure group CLS, IBM have developed a distributed ledger technology system (DLT) that aims to assist financial service companies such as banks. The DLT has been designed to use blockchain technology to assist banks with their operations, streamlining a number of processes from customer services and sanction screening, to collateral management and general market data analysis. The system, named IBM Ledger Connect should spearhead a new revolution within the way banks and financial service firms operate via the blockchain. According to CNBC:
“IBM's LedgerConnect platform is hosted on a single network. It aims to be a one-stop shop for financial institutions to create blockchain applications. So far, nine financial services companies, including banks Barclays and Citi, are involved in the proof of concept. The DLT platform is not widely available yet, but IBM said it could be following completion of a successful proof of concept, regulatory approvals and sufficient market demand.”
See the full article for yourself, here. How could this lead to an in-bank cryptocurrency revolution?As blockchain becomes embedded within mainstream financial services, management and decision makers will be exposed to cryptocurrencies and tokens that can be used both internally and externally to assist the banks with their operations. Remittance payments are one example where this technology comes into its own, and therefore we may see integration of services from Ripple and Stellar with XRP and XLM (for example), or, moreover, these firms could build an affiliation with stores to accept currencies such as Litecoin as a payment option, through the Barclays blockchain for example.It’s an abstract concept at the moment, but with huge firms like Barclays Bank and Citibank now a part of this project, we can only see this going in one direction, a direction that at the very least, makes the people in charge talk about cryptocurrencies.