Since its inception six years ago, bitcoin and its parent technology-blockchain have enjoyed favor among many industry players throughout the world. However, one of its biggest opponents has been traditional financial institutions who have viewed it as a threat. Despite this, many of their recent actions indicate a changing attitude; potentially fueled by the advantages that blockchain has over their closed databases. Here we mention eight of the largest banks which have shown interest in the tech.
Reports suggest that the French banking giant has in recent months been making moves that seek to take full advantage of the blockchain technology. This has been reinforced by a recent analysis by one of its analysts indicating that the technology has the potential of not only disrupting but also improving global trading.
Société Générale is also referred as SocGen and it is France’s third largest bank by asset base. It has made some strong indications that blockchain tech is part of its growth plan. It posted a job advert earlier this month seeking to hire an IT developer with a focus on bitcoin, blockchain, and cryptocurrencies. This advert shows that the bank is looking forward to developing its own software.
Citibank is one among the ten largest banks in the world today and has been actively conducting extensive research on the distributed ledger technology for a number of years now. Apart from testing Citicoin, its very own cryptocurrency; the bank has made a formal request for the British government to create a digital currency.
Citibank is a sponsor of the Consesus, the first conference of CoinDesk. It is during this even that this bank is expected to open up about blockchain technology and Bitcoin.
The Swedish bank has in the past year produced a detailed report outlining and explaining the widespread benefits that the adoption of blockchain technology could have on the banking sector. This has been followed by an announcement that they would be opening up a research lab for the same in London earlier this year. This is aimed at promoting the integration of Fin Tech into traditional banking.
The British conglomerate has in the past month announced its intention of starting trials of the bitcoin technology. The Barclays bank has also signed agreements with firms such as Safello, which is a bitcoin exchange based in Sweden. This is in addition to its support of startups and the political goodwill of high ranking officials such as Usama Fayyad; the bank’s chief data officer who has spoken favorably regarding the technology.
Despite its initial dismissal of bitcoin as a commodity rather than a currency, the American powerhouse has indicated a change of heart if its recent activities are anything to go by. They have even been involved in Circle Inc’s $50m investment round. This caught most people by surprise including the media.
Banco Santader Spanish bank has been undertaking experiments with blockchain for some time now and is yet to reveal its findings. From the outlook and the proclamations made by its representatives and subsidiaries indicate that the bank is putting the technology as part of its long term plans.
Finally, Standard Chattered has also made some moves implying that it also seeks to embrace the blockchain technology. Recently, its Chief Innovation Officer- Anju Patwardhan showed strong support for the bitcoin technology via LinkedIn. However, she is of the opinion that despite its benefits, bitcoin can never replace the fiat currencies. Just like banks, they never believed its worth any attention.
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