Blockchain Lab Opened By Russia’s Sberbank

Announcements, Blockchain | January 15, 2018 By:

Sberbank, a state-owned Russian banking and financial services company, has opened a blockchain lab to conduct research and collaborate with startups and other groups.

The bank said the new blockchain lab will focus on creating prototypes, pilot programs and business applications. The lab will interact with other Sberbank laboratories. It will provide services for other market participants, like startup companies and business associations. The goal of the lab is to make blockchain technology popular, in addition to providing educational programs.

Sberbank Senior Vice President Igor Bulantsev said blockchain can significantly change many business areas within the financial markets, traditional banking, and client servicing.

“The development and the implementation of the newest technologies is not just a part of Sberbank’s competitiveness, but a set piece of the bank’s future as a technology company,” said Bulantsev. “The blockchain is an instrument that improves the effectiveness of cooperation between the market participants. Thus, by creating the laboratory, Sberbank is contributing to the future of the banking system and Russia itself.”

The bank has more than 20 blockchain pilot projects, including an ethereum proof-of-concepts for a smart letter of credit and a letter of guarantee. Both projects were undertaken with Russian government cooperation and approval. The bank also carried out the first blockchain transaction in Russia using IBM’s blockchain platform, which is built on Hyperledger Fabric.

In October, 2017, it became the first Russian bank to join the the Enterprise Ethereum Alliance (EEA), a non-profit organization that explores ethereum’s blockchain for different use cases.