SWIFT Announces Distributed Ledger Technology Trial Integration With R3
The revolution is today. Now, even SWIFT is ready to use the blockchain technology. The global payments network, which exists for decades, is now testing GPI payments using R3’s Corda platform.
Gottfried Leibbrant, the CEO of SWIFT, was the first one to make the announcement at the Paris Fintech Forum. He hinted at the partnership, which was followed by the proper announcement. The SWIFT GPI Link gateway will be interlinked with Corda in order to be able to monitor payment flows and support APIs using the SWIFT and ISO standards.
According to Gottfried, the GPI platform is very open and easy to link with other networks, so linking it with a blockchain technology can be a new and exciting experience in which you can use another platform to initiate payment and then use the GPI.
— Clovis Loizillon (@ClovisLoizillon) January 30, 2019
Basically, the idea is to link the GPI Link and Corda to authorize payments via the two sides. GPI payments will be settled by the banks and the credit confirmations will be sent. If the trial is successful, other blockchains and even e-commerce platforms may be added later.
The GPI Link will be directly linked to the Corda Settler, a new technology created by R3. Initially, the Corda Settler would use Ripple’s technology to make international settlements. Brad Garlinghouse, the CEO of Ripple, was on the stage with the CEO of SWIFT, which has criticized the “aging architecture” of SWIFT often. However, now this technology will be directly linked with SWIFT.
The Chief Marketing Officer of SWIFT, Luc Meurant, has affirmed that the connection will provide a quick and transparent route for settlements and that Corda seems to be a natural choice for a partnership.
In fact, streamlining international transactions and making them more transparent is part of the obvious goal of SWIFT here. Instead of competing with the blockchain, SWIFT is eager to absorb it and create something better together.
SWIFT And The Blockchain
SWIFT has a network of more than 10,000 banks. It is the largest and most important money transmitter entity in the world and companies like Ripple are constantly trying to topple it. While SWIFT has already had some experience with blockchain pilots in the past, no one was ever very successful.
While this is only a proof of concept plan and there is plenty of space for the real revolution to happen later, it is remarkable that SWIFT is accepting the blockchain technology so fast. We have seen banks trying to attack cryptocurrencies so many times that most would expect SWIFT to see the technology as an enemy, not a possible ally and it is great that this is what is happening.
SWIFT was doubtful about the blockchain technology just some time ago and people from the company often claimed that it was not that disruptive. It looks like things have changed quite a bit since then, though, as this trial with the Corda platform is the ultimate proof that SWIFT is now betting on the blockchain technology.