The promise of the blockchain: Accelerating transformation in the finance industry

Executive summary

The global finance industry deals with trillions of dollars and billions of people every day. As the numbers grow exponentially, so do the challenges – from legacy systems, bulky paperwork, delayed transactions, and cross-border inefficiencies to sophisticated fraud and data threats. Mutual distributed ledger technologies (DLT), commonly referred to as blockchain, have the potential to not only overcome these challenges but also transform the finance function in a big way. The benefits are extensive, ranging from centralization, reliability, simplification and transparency to traceability, time and cost savings, faster transaction processing, improved data quality, and more.

Blockchain technology disrupts the traditional approach of closed books and centralized operations. It makes all transactions visible among all systems on the network, bringing in advantages of decentralization and distributed ledgers. It also ensures accuracy as the digitally signed transactions with private and public encryption keys remain immutable.

It has been estimated that nearly 15% of enterprise banks will use blockchain by 2017. With increasing demand for DLT solutions from Financial Institutions (FI), several new vendors are set to release production-ready software by 2018.

This paper assesses the impact of blockchain on the financial services industry and offers specific use cases and best practices for its deployment.

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