Hitachi and BTMU Kick Off Blockchain Testing For Check Digitalization in Singapore

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Hitachi  and the Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi (BTMU) today announced that they have started Proof of Concept (PoC) testing for using Blockchain technology for the digitalization of checks in the Republic of Singapore.

In the PoC testing, Hitachi and BTMU communally developed a system in which Blockchain infrastructure are used for issuing, transferring and collecting electronic checks. Using the system, BTMU issues and settles checks and some of Hitachi Group companies in Singapore receive the electronic check and deposit the funds.

Through the PoC testing, Hitachi and BTMU will be able to identify issues from various perspectives such as technology, security, operation, and legal perspectives, and aim to realize new FinTech services including digitalization of checks.

In recent years, various efforts towards providing new financial services that utilize Blockchain technology and making financial services more efficient have been accelerated. Blockchain is a technology which makes difficult to tamper the data, sharing the data related to processes among multiple computers over networks. With applying Blockchain technology, it is expected to reduce system investments and to realize providing reliable and convenient financial services.

The Monetary Authority of Singapore has recently released a consultation paper on proposed guidelines for a regulatory sandbox framework to facilitate the advancement of FinTech services. With the framework, this PoC testing aims to identify issues for practical use, issuing and settling check by Blockchain technology on a system developed by Hitachi Asia Ltd., the Asian regional headquarters of Hitachi, Ltd. and BTMU as one of the collaborative creations between Hitachi and BTMU in the Asian region.

The digitalization of checks makes it possible to automate the workloads of intermediaries for checks in financial institutions, to avoid tampering and to speed up settling checks. In addition, it is expected that similar approaches can be applied to payment and supply chain finance in non-financial sectors in the future.

Based on this PoC testing, Hitachi and BTMU will increase efforts towards putting Blockchain technology into practical use, and will contribute towards the global expansion and evolution of financial services.

About Richard Kastelein

Founder, Publisher and Editor in Chief of industry leading online publication, Blockchain News and co-founder and director at Blockchain Partners in London/Amsterdam/NYC. Kastelein is also an advisor with a number Blockchain startups doing ICOs including Humaniq.co where hs is interim CMO, DECENT.ch, Inchain, Chronobank, eGaas and others. He is regarded as one of the top journalists by the Blockchain and fintech communities – as is evident by his entry in the Top 150 Fintech journalists online and in the top 10 of the Blockchain Top 100 List.

As a prominent keynote presenter, he has spoken on Blockchain at events in Gdansk, Amsterdam, Minsk, Dubai, Antwerp, Eindhoven, Bucharest, Nairobi, Tel Aviv, Manchester, Brussels, Barcelona etc, where he helped spread the cause for Blockchain technology and cryptocurrency and, consequently, has built a notable network in the scene.

He’s also a director of a Dutch foundation called The Hackitarians and has run innovation events in London, San Francisco, Berlin, Amsterdam and other cities around the world on topics such Blockchain, Health, Energy, Internet of Things, AI etc.

In 2013, the European Commission appointed him as an expert for overseeing financing for emerging startups as a part of the European Commission’s 90 billion euro Horizon 2020 project, created in Brussels to promote innovation as a driving force of job creation and business ventures across Europe. He has also worked as an external expert for Innovate UK since 2012, judging startups for the UK government.

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