The South African Financial Blockchain Consortium (SAFBC) has won the blockchain category of The Banker’s 2017 technology project of the year awards.
Membership of the consortium comprises 24 banks, financial market infrastructure providers, and other institutions involved in the financial services industry – institutions which traditionally are fierce competitors.
It also counts two regulators among its membership as observers.
The SAFBC is exploring different technologies, including Ethereum, Hyperledger, and Corda.
Within a year of initial talks, the consortium established a private Ethereum blockchain with nine institutions acting as nodes on the network issuing tokens, followed by a smart contract allowing a “delivery versus payment” transaction on the blockchain.
The Banker said the consortium is attempting to show how the technology is a paradigm shifter.
“The historic assumptions that were taken for granted, such as digital money intimately tied with credit risk against the institution holding the money, as well as the entire concept of fractional-reserve banking, are being questioned,” said the SAFBC.
“This questioning is allowing a whole host of possibilities to emerge, pointing to a much better financial system that better serves the needs of customers and clients.”