The Voltron initiative has launched the open platform for documentary trade, targeting production on R3’s Corda Enterprise blockchain platform in 2019. Founding members of Voltron include Bangkok Bank, BNP Paribas, CTBC Holding, HSBC, ING, NatWest, SEB and Standard Chartered. Voltron’s initial aim is to use blockchain technology to bring significant efficiencies to transacting letters of credit.
Collaboration with corporate customers has been critical in shaping the initiative, with a successful live transaction with Cargill in May 2018 demonstrating the viability of the platform. Voltron is continuing to extend its corporate customer program to undertake more live transactions and is in active discussions with a number of corporates.
Corporate customers will be able to connect with their banks and trading partners via a single, simplified channel, for both issuance of letters of credit and presentation/exchange of documents across an open network. In addition, trade documents produced on external networks by a corporate’s supply chain partners can be digitally sent, verified and processed in Voltron. This new model provides legal enforceability of title documents and greater digitization across business networks on Corda, addressing the challenge of today’s digital islands bridged by paper-based processes. The Bolero network and electronic Bill of Lading (eBL) functionality is included at launch. The essDocs network and eBL solution will start the initial design and integration with the Voltron solution, with others to be added on a rolling basis.
Voltron will enable banks to speed up financing decisions and enhance the customer experience. The banks’ corporate clients can reduce internal operational procedures through less reconciliation with their trading partners and banks. To help lower barriers of adoption and create an open ecosystem, a unique partner program is available to enable trade finance platform providers to offer a Letters of Credit solution on the Voltron business network. Voltron is working with four of the leading trade finance platform vendors to design and build a solution that will offer a Voltron-enabled service to their existing bank and corporate customers.
Voltron extends an open invitation to all banks and corporates to apply to join the network.
David E. Rutter, CEO, R3 comments: “Today’s trade finance solutions were built in siloes, adding significant risk, operational inefficiencies and costs into the process. Previous trades conducted on Voltron have demonstrated banks can offer a commercially and operationally viable blockchain solution with significant customer benefit.
“It is critical for banks and corporates to have the option to work with the technology partner of their choice, as this lowers barriers to adoption and helps drive widespread deployment of Voltron via our partners. In addition, our focus on industry collaboration and open networks uniquely positions Voltron to scale by leveraging the Corda Network to ensure interoperability with other global trade initiatives and other networks including supply chain, cash, insurance and identity”, he adds.