Infosys Finacle, part of EdgeVerve Systems, a wholly owned subsidiary of Infosys (NYSE: INFY), and The Commercial Bank, Qatar’s first private bank, along with its subsidiary and associates (“Group”), recently announced the successful completion of a pilot on the first ever cloud-based blockchain network to process international remittances. Commercial Bank, along with its subsidiary Alternatifbank (“ABank”) in Turkey and its associates National Bank of Oman (“NBO”) in Oman and United Arab Bank (“UAB”) in the UAE, have formed a grid for routing cross border business transactions across the India-GCC corridor. This is among the busiest remittances corridor in the world, as per the World Bank report.
The blockchain network of Commercial Bank Group was created in a matter of weeks, independent of the underlying core banking systems at each of the banks. The network is built on an asset-agnostic cloud-based ledger with which the banks are able to automate inter-organizational processes, reducing the risk of fraud and enabling greater transparency. The permissioned network eliminates the need for intermediaries, enabling the banks to settle customer payment requests on a real-time basis.
In the next phase of this project, the Commercial Bank will focus on trade finance transactions, particularly the transmission of secure documents and smart contracts. The blockchain network powered by Infosys Finacle, will allow all trade finance transactions to be paperless, further simplifying the process of digital exchange of purchase orders and invoices. The banks can exchange and authenticate original international trade documents electronically in real time, as against several days which was earlier the accepted norm. The solution will deliver enhanced transactional security and higher accuracy at lower costs.
Joseph Abraham, Chief Executive Officer, Commercial Bank:
“This pilot has demonstrated the immense potential of blockchain to provide the best customer experience for our clients and given us a glimpse of what more we could do on this powerful platform. We are delighted with the success of this pilot across the Commercial Bank Group and want to expand our cluster to form closed group networks for trade and cash transactions with more banks in South Asia, Egypt, Philippines, UAE and other countries with higher transaction volumes. We hope to leverage what is quickly becoming the largest emerging consortium, in terms of transactions, and offer a wider range of products and services to individuals and organizations alike, on this platform.”
Samir El-Sheikh, Chief Operating Officer, Commercial Bank:
“It is essential that the Commercial Bank leverages the latest in technology to build our business models and offer best-in-class experience for our clients. The blockchain framework powered by Infosys Finacle has given us an ideal platform to enhance our customer experience through this pilot program for cross border remittances. We look forward to exceeding client expectations when we go-live on the trade finance module, which will have many more innovative use cases.”
Sanat Rao, Chief Business Officer and Global Head, Infosys Finacle:
“The adoption of a cloud-based blockchain network by the Commercial Bank Group is a pioneering step, where they will automate the remittances and trade finance processes to deliver significant cost savings and enhanced customer experience. We are looking forward to expand on the current use cases and develop this pilot as a model for other progressive banking groups.”