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Contour launches following success of bank-backed project to digitize Trade Finance

Backed by some of the world’s leading trade finance banks, Contour offers a network to improve processing time for Letters of Credit

 The launch follows a series of groundbreaking live pilots in 14 countries and a global trial with more than 50 banks and corporates, which reduced processing times for Letters of Credit by over 90%, from 5-10 days to under 24 hours for an industry of USD 18 trillion.

Contour now moves into full commercialization of its offering and has established itself in Singapore as a fully independent network and is inviting banks and corporates to join its beta network.

Contour, co-founded by ING Ventures

The business is backed by: Bangkok Bank Public Company Limited, BNP Paribas SA, CTBC Venture Capital Co. Ltd, HSBC Investment Bank Holdings Limited, ING Bank N.V., Standard Chartered UK Holdings Limited, Skandinaviska Enskilda Banken AB (publ), Bain & Company, Inc. , CryptoBLK Limited and R3 Limited.

 Contour is built on R3’s Corda Blockchain

 The network is focusing initially on Letters of Credit (LoCs), which are issued between banks, typically across country borders. They serve as a guarantee for payments between two companies or entities who want to trade goods or services with each other.

Contour digitizes LoCs on Blockchain, helping banks and corporates save time and money by reducing old fashioned, duplicative processes.

While historically recognized as an excellent risk-mitigation mechanism, research by Contour reveals that 86% of participants consider traditional LoCs as over-reliant on paper, takes too long and is becoming ‘intolerable’ for both corporates and banks.

Carl Wegner, CEO, Contour said:  “The opportunity cost in trade finance is huge. Trillions of dollars in commodities, products and services are transacted daily, but the sector is still characterized by slow, duplicative and expensive processes. Contour delivers a network where trusted information is shared in real-time, effectively digitizing Letters of Credit across all users in the transaction

“We are indebted to the community of banks and corporates who have collaborated with us to validate our solution which delivers genuine, measurable value as well as process improvement around Letters of Credit. With the launch, Contour is now available to provide a full commercial service to organizations looking to enhance their trade finance practices.

“We are now focusing on scaling the network with more banks, corporates and partners, and look forward to continuing to collaborate with our growing community.” 

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