FinTech Weekly Round-up: 17th February


Huge week in FinTech with some very notable events coming hot off the press. The ‘Blockchain not Bitcoin’ brigade will all be very happy with developments across the board. The financial publication ‘Barron’s’ even had the audacity to claim The Bitcoin Dream was killed by movers in the space – we will get to that in a moment, but here is this weeks round-up.

JP Morgan Join the Blockchain Party

Dominating headlines this week, JP Morgan announce a successful test run of JPM Coin. The move comes as no surprise to many in the industry, with Jamie Dimon previously remarking the benefits the bank sees in implementing blockchain technology.

For observers in the space, the advantages of speed and transparency of blockchain technology are obvious. For casual onlookers, the move appeared strange as the giant US bank had previously gone on the record denouncing cryptocurrency. Many don’t understand the difference between private and public blockchains.

The move was largely welcomed by those in the industry, with even Bitcoin maximalists treating the news as positive.

The utilisation of a digital asset to speed up and facilitate payments socialises the concept of blockchain technology. The door is open to a large store of value like Bitcoin utilsed as a settlement currency.

It is inevitable that other banks will want to follow JP Morgans lead.

Ripple responded with frustration to the news. Brad Garlinghouse suggested that JP Morgan had missed the point completely on crypto. It’s easy to see why the XRParmy would be upset with this development as banks using Ripple as a settlement currency is their ultimate goal.

RippleNet announce yet another Partnership

It wasn’t all bad news at Ripple headquarters this week. Finablr, a UAE-based payment and foreign exchange company, announced that they would provide cross-border payment services using RippleNet. Finablr has existing relationships with the Siam bank in Thailand and has also recently made a key acquisition of Indian payments firm TimesofMoney.

Ripple appear to announce a partnership every other week. It is still extremely unclear as to the actual use case of the XRP token. Ripple labs and RippleNet being the focus of the partnership announced. If Ripple is able to succinctly demonstrate how the XRP token is to be used, outside of acting as a centralised treasury for the business, they could see tremendous amounts of success in the payments industry.

At this point, the jury is still out.

Oracle Private Blockchain gains traction

In further developments for private blockchains this week European startup SDK.Finance has announced a partnership with Oracle.

SDK.Finance will be using the Oracle platform to improve payments processes and remove the need to use intermediary banks and financial institutions.

The world of payments is a complicated mesh of corresponding banking systems. The introduction of blockchain technology enabled by API’s allows dramatic changes to be made which ultimately benefits end users.

Electronics and Finance giant teams up with Internet giant

The final global conglomerate to get on board the blockchain bandwagon this week is the Mitsubishi group. MUFJ have announced a partnership with Akamai,best known for providing Content Delivery Networks.

By capitalising on Akamai’s knowledge of the internet, we can expect to see some exciting developments from MUFJ in the world of Blockchain in tandem with Internet of Things (IoT) applications.

IoT and micro-transactions are an area the Blockchain, and specifically smart contracts are expected to influence the 21st century.

Conditional obligations being fulfilled on the back of telemetric sensors – i.e. my fridge can tell when I am low on milk so a micro-transaction is completed without human interaction are a primary use case of the technology. These two giants of industry can be expected to lead the charge with innovation on that front.

About Nakameowdough

Nakameowdough has only known about Crypto since late 2017. As soon as he heard about it from a trusted source, he spent the next 14 months with his head buried in books on the subject or listening to a multitude of podcasts.

This dedicated self-development allowed him to pivot from a career in I.T. towards FinTech and he now works with one of the most exciting companies in London, the FinTech hub of the world.

His position within that company affords him the benefit of working with highly innovative businesses and facing the challenges of integrating exciting solutions, with old systems.You can reach Nakameowdough on Twitter

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