Banking giant operating in Switzerland, UBS has announced it has gone live on its We.Trade blockchain platform for trade finance. The bank also announced that the platform will soon be adopted by other banks that are also members.
As per bank's spokesperson, the giant financial institution went live on we.trade from the start of October supporting services to small and medium enterprises (SMEs).
The spokesperson told Coindesk that the bank was reaching out to customers with the aim of creating awareness about the new blockchain-based platform and explaining to them how it works.
The new platform will help in provision of shared virtual-based records about global trades which in the past was paper-based. The platform will enhance trust among the firms involved in execution of the trade agreements. We.trade emphasizes of creation of a trusted network between the SME customers of the European banks. Some of the services offered by the platform comprise of payment guarantees as well as invoice financing where banks charge a given fee depending on the transaction type.
We.trade was introduced mid last year and is ahead of competitors such as Marco Polo which is a blockchain-based blockchain that is a brainchild of TradeIX as well R3 which is still in the piloting stage. The UBS we.trade platform is all but set and is awaiting commercial adoption and according to the spokesperson, they are planning to bring as many banks onboard as well as attract more SMEs.
Austrian based Erste Group as well as CaixaBank from Spain also began offering live transactions at the start of this month. In addition, Greece’s Eurobank as well as three major banks from Czech Republic – CSOB, Komercni, and Česká Spořitelna – are also expected to join early next year. The three major banks from Czech control about 80 percent of the local trade in the country.
Speaking to CoinDesk, the general manager of we.trade, Ciaran McGowan, explained that the auto settlement services will be free within Czech Republic to experiment whether a free model for domestic trade will bring fast and easy adoption of the platform.
Currently major European Banks like Deutsche, HSBC, KBC, Santander, among others are using we.trade for settlement of trade agreements.