IBM and Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ to Use Blockchain For Contract Management

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IBM has announced it has signed a contract with the Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ (BTMU) to examine the design, management and execution of contracts among business partners using Blockchain technologies. The two companies will begin by piloting Blockchain to automate business transactions between the two companies.

This is one of the first projects built on the Hyperledger Project fabric, an open-source Blockchain platform, to use Blockchain for real-life contract management on the IBM Cloud.

IBM and BTMU have built a prototype of smart contracts on a Blockchain to improve the efficiency and accountability of service level agreements in multi-party business interactions. The bank plans to begin using it to manage contracts within their business in fiscal year 2017. In addition, IBM and BTMU aim to manage agreements between the two companies with the system by the end of fiscal year 2017. To help improve efficiency, IBM and BTMU will monitor delivery and usage of equipment with a sensor that embeds information into the Blockchain. This will then automate invoicing and payment processes between the two companies.

“Blockchain technology has the potential to change not only the financial world, but also other areas of the business world, leading to improved efficiency of the end-to-end business process,“ said Mr. Motoi Mitsuishi, Deputy Chief Executive Officer of BTMU Asia & Oceania and General Manager, Singapore Branch and Corporate Banking Division for Asia & Oceania. “Today, we are embarking on a journey with IBM to exploit the potential of this new technology. We are very pleased with the outcome of the first Blockchain proof of concept working with IBM Research and IBM Global Business Services and we look forward to seeing these Blockchain applications come to fruition.”

“IBM continues to invest billions of dollars into research on emerging technologies that hold transformative potential for our clients. Blockchain will reinvent complex multi-party and contract-based business models, especially in banking and financial services,” said Bridget van Kralingen, senior vice president, IBM Industry Platforms. “This expands our expertise in helping clients identify the right projects and build out Blockchain solutions to solve day-to-day business problems more effectively. We are delighted to be expanding the scope of our partnership with BTMU with this Blockchain initiative.” 

IBM announced the launch of the first global research-led IBM Center for Blockchain Innovation in Singapore in collaboration with the Singapore Economic Development Board and the Monetary Authority of Singapore. Located at the Watson Centre at the Marina Bay, the Centre aims to propel Singapore into a top destination for innovation in finance, trade, and commerce, and establish it as a global center of deep competence, expertise and industry leadership in enterprise Blockchain and cognitive technologies.

IBM is rapidly expanding its Blockchain consulting services and capabilities and actively working with clients to understand what it takes to make Blockchain ready for business. Through its open source contributions to the Hyperledger Fabric and its Blockchain services on IBM Bluemix, developers can easily and quickly develop applications while testing security, availability, and performance of a permissioned Blockchain network. IBM is advancing the science of Blockchain, helping to remove complexity, and making it more accessible and open. Financial services, supply chains, IoT, risk management, digital rights management and healthcare are some of the areas that are poised for dramatic change using Blockchain networks.

Richard Kastelein

About Richard Kastelein

Founder, Publisher and Editor in Chief of Blockchain News and co-founder and director at Blockchain Partners in London/Amsterdam/NYC, Richard Kastelein is also an advisor with a number Blockchain startups doing ICOs including DECENT.ch, Inchain, Humaniq, 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 etc, where he helped spread the cause for Blockchain technology and crypto-currency and, consequently, has built a notable network inthe scene.

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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