IRTI Partners With Ateon And Settlemint To Develop Blockchain-based Products For Financial Inclusion

Image Below - From left to right: Kashif Younus (Ateon, Technical Sales Manager), Matthew Van Niekerk (SettleMint, Founder & CEO), Abdulaziz Alhamrani (Alhamrani Group Holding, CEO), Syed Aqa (IDB, Acting President and IsDB Vice President), Dr. Mohamed Jouini (IsDB, Vice President), Dr. Husam Yaghi (Ateon, President), Dr. Sami AlSuwailem (IRTI, IsDB, Head of Financial Product Development Center), Dr. Hilal Houssain (IRTI, IsDB, Senior Financial Product Development Specialist - Fintech)

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The Islamic Research and Training Institute, the research arm of the Islamic Development Bank Group, signed an agreement with Ateon to build a Blockchain-based financial product that can potentially be used to support development and financial inclusion in IsDB member countries.

Ateon, a member of Alhamrani Group Holding in Saudi Arabia, is a specialized consultancy in financial technology (FinTech), will be working on this project with SettleMint, a Belgium-based software company with rich experience in developing Blockchain applications for financial institutions.

The three parties will be working on the first of its kind use case using Blockchain’s smart contracts to create Sharia compliant financial products to support the development in IsDB member countries.

From an Islamic perspective, money should be transparent, stable, and trustworthy. Blockchain technologies are able, in principle, to serve these objectives in a robust and cost-effective manner.

Blockchain smart contracts enable the automation of the entire contractual process for Islamic institutions, alleviating the additional administrative and legal complexities and redundancies associated with Sharia compliant financial products.  Not only that, smart contracts are easy to verify, immutable and secure.

The International Fiqh Academy has approved contracting through electronic means since 1990.

About Richard Kastelein

Founder and publisher of industry publication Blockchain News (EST 2015), partner at ICO services collective CryptoAsset Design Group ($500m+ and 50+ ICOs), director of education company Blockchain Partners (Oracle Partner) – Vancouver native Richard Kastelein is an award-winning publisher, innovation executive and entrepreneur.

He sits on the advisory boards of some two dozen Blockchain startups
and has written over 1500 articles on Blockchain technology and
startups at Blockchain News and has also published pioneering articles on ICOs in Harvard Business Review and Venturebeat

Ad honorem - Honorary Ph.d - Chair Professor of Blockchain at
China's first Blockchain University in Nanchang at the Jiangxi Ahead
Institute of Software and Technology. In 2018 he was invited to and attended University of Oxford's Saïd Business School for Business
Automation 4.0 programme. Chevalier (Knight) - Ordre des Arts et des
Technologies at Crypto Chain University and on advisory board of Advisory Board Member of International Decentralized Association Of Cryptocurrency And Blockchain (IDABC) as well as Advisory Board Member at U.S. Blockchain Association.

Over a half a decade experience judging and rewarding some 1000+
innovation projects as an EU expert for the European Commission's SME
Instrument programme as a startup assessor and as a startup judge for
the UK government's Innovate UK division. Kastelein has spoken
(keynotes & panels) on Blockchain technology in Amsterdam, Antwerp, Barcelona, Beijing, Brussels, Bucharest, Dubai, Eindhoven, Gdansk, Groningen, the Hague, Helsinki, London (5x), Manchester, Minsk, Nairobi, Nanchang, San Mateo, San Francisco, Santa Clara, Shanghai, Singapore (3x), Tel Aviv, Utrecht, Venice, Visakhapatnam, Zwolle and Zurich

His network is global and extensive. He is a Canadian (Dutch/Irish/English/Métis) whose writing career has ranged from the Canadian Native Press (Arctic) to the Caribbean & Europe

He's written occasionally for Harvard Business Review, Wired, Venturebeat, The Guardian and and his work and ideas have been translated into Dutch, Greek, Polish, German and French.

A journalist by trade, an entrepreneur and adventurer at heart,
Kastelein's professional career has ranged from political publishing to
TV technology, boatbuilding to judging startups, skippering yachts to
marketing and more as he's travelled for nearly 30 years as a Canadian
expatriate living around the world

In his 20s, he sailed around the world on small yachts and wrote a
series of travel articles called, 'The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Seas'
travelling by hitching rides on yachts (1989) in major travel and
yachting publications. 

He currently lives in Groningen, Netherlands where he's raising three teenage daughters with his wife and sailing partner, Wieke Beenen.

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