The presence of blockchain technology across various sectors has been on the increase recently and the latest partnership between Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation [SMBC] and Mitsui & Co. Ltd is a testament to that fact. According to the official release from SMBC stated that the two companies had completed a PoC utilizing Marco Polo, a blockchain-based trade finance platform developed by R3 LLC.
The official statement read:
“The PoC was conducted based on actual cross-border trade flow involving Mitsui &Co. Indorama Ventures Group, Bangkok Bank Public Company Limited (“Bangkok Bank”, a Marco Polo member firm) and SMBC. Traditionally the parties’ exchange of purchase orders, invoices and various other documents are paper based. Now by utilizing Marco Polo platform this process has become digitalized and automated.”
The tie-up will also ensure that individual articles will be able to update data connected to purchase orders, invoices, and shipping, such as the logistics company name, port of loading/destination, shipping dates, etc. based on the most up-to-date information. This information will then be shared with other parties in the space in real-time, an advantage in a time-oriented business. SMBC continued:
“In addition, it was confirmed that Bangkok Bank was able to issue a payment guarantee for Indorama to Mitsui and Co. and Mitsui & Co. could request receivable financing from SMBC based on the payment guarantee through the Marco Polo platform if necessary. But auto-matching data via the platform, it was possible to enhance the efficiency of data reconciliation and demonstrate the possibilities of utilizing a blockchain based trade finance platform.”
The bank has stated that they expect the platform to launch within the third quarter of 2019 to become a leading provider of next-generation global trade finance solutions. This will be done by streamlining the operational process of the integral parts of transfer and leveraging blockchain technology to add value.
Marco Polo will use Ripple partner R3’s open-source, which already has several institutions like Bank of America, BNP Paribas, and MasterCard on its client sheet.
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