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ANZ and IBM working on Blockchain to ease Payment Process

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New Zealand’s largest bank, ANZ and tech giant IBM, in collaboration with Suncorp New Zealand are developing a blockchain solution to make the data transfer and payment reconciliation process, quicker and more transparent between brokers and insurers.

The reconciliation process today is slow, complex and cumbersome leading to overall efficiency of the system. By teaming up with IBM, ANZ aims to enhance overall process efficiency by implementing IBM’S enterprise Blockchain Hyperledger Fabric software for reconciling policies and premium payments made by customers to insurance firms. The Hyperledger, a blockchain framework implemented by the The Linux Foundation will be used as the foundation for blockchain applications.

“Reconciling policy information and premium payments made by a broker to an insurer on behalf of customers is a slow and painful process,” said Paul Goodwin, ANZ Managing Director Institutional NZ. “The blockchain solution will be much more efficient for the industry as well as being very secure. As a ‘single source of truth’, it will provide greater visibility throughout the process, remove uncertainty and help make response times faster.”

The Hyperledger Project is essentially several firms coming together to each offer intellectual property and resources in order to develop their own blockchain. IBM, Intel, the London Stock Exchange, State Street, Wells Fargo, Cisco, CLS, Digital Asset, Fujitsu, IC3, Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group, SWIFT and VMware are already a part of this ambitious project. ANZ just became the latest company to join in.

Although blockchain is essentially a decentralized database of transactions of the cryptocurrency Bitcoin, the aim of the Hyperledger project is to develop a framework whereby entities can transfer any kind of asset amongst themselves.

“We are pleased to confirm our participation in the open ledger project as we recognise that there is currently no industry accepted, enterprise-grade blockchain framework today that is fit for purpose for our industry,” said ANZ chief technology officer Patrick Maes in a statement.

Hence, ANZ joins a long list of technology firms and traditional financial institutions on the journey to assess and explore how blockchain technology can be used to enhance business strategies and the overall efficiency of operations.

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