The London-based financial giant, Barclays is embracing Bitcoin and Blockchain technology to improve its financial service offerings. The company is creating working relationships with the alumni of its Barclays Fintech Accelerator program and one among them is Safello.
Safello is a Swedish Bitcoin exchange that was part of the recently concluded Barclays Fintech accelerator program. After finishing the demo day along with nine other teams earlier this week, Safello became one of the seven teams that are working closely with Barclays Bank to explore further opportunities.
Safello is now working closely with Barclays Bank to explore the different applications of Blockchain technology in banking and financial operations. As per the agreement entered by Safello with Barclay, it will be working on proof of concepts by attempting to run conventional banking processes on the Blockchain.
Blockchain is the backbone of Bitcoin network. It is a decentralized ledger that stores Bitcoin transactions and other non-transactional data. It is already being used for proof of existence, smart contracts, intellectual property management etc. Also many banks across the world have also started exploring the possibility of incorporating Blockchain technology into their everyday operations.
According to the Santander report on Blockchain technology in banking industry, Banks can save close to $20 billion per year on infrastructure costs by using Bitcoin technology. At present, most of the banks still depend upon legacy systems which makes money transfer across international boundaries slow and expensive whereas with Bitcoin technology, it is almost instant. Also, with Blockchain being a secure and transparent ledger, it can also reduce compliance costs with respect to record keeping.
Some of the prominent banks like UBS and Goldman Sachs have already invested money on Bitcoin research to study its feasibility in regular banking operations. Also, recently the Commonwealth Bank of Australia has recently entered into a partnership with Ripple Network for transferring funds across its branches.
Traditional financial companies will continue to study the technology behind Bitcoin until they can replicate the same mechanism for fiat currency and they may succeed in it too.