A consortium of Italian banks has successfully completed the initial trial of a blockchain-based system aimed at enhancing interbank operations.
Known as the interbank Spunta Project, the 14 banks chose the Corda distributed ledger technology platform developed by the R3 blockchain consortium. The application was developed by NTT Data Italia while decentralized storage platform Sia provided the node infrastructure. During the trial phase which lasted for a period of 10 months, around 1.2 million transactions were processed, according to Ansa.
Speed, Efficiency and Transparency
Some of the improvements expected to be made using the blockchain solution include boosting transparency, speeding up processing times and enhancing efficiency with regards to the exchange of information and verification of details. At the time when the trial was announced last year in December, the CEO of R3, David Rutter, indicated that these were the goals:
“Working with ABI Lab we are using Corda to automate the matching process, helping Italian banks avoid mismatches and improve efficiency and accuracy across the board. This PoC [proof of concept] will demonstrate how easy it is for banks to reduce their operational and back office costs, while saving time and communicating securely by utilising DLT.”
The Spunta Project is being operated by ABI Lab, the research and innovation center of the Associazione Bancaria Italiana (loose translation – Italian Banking Association) . In the next phase of the project, blockchain applications will be used by the banks in everyday transactions.
The 14 banks falling under the umbrella of the ABI include Italy’s second largest bank Intesa Sanpaolo, Credit Agricole (the