Innovators Explore The Potential Of The Blockchain

The blockchain is best-known for its role in facilitating payments transactions with bitcoin. But as the technology becomes more well-known, the market has begun exploring new uses for the ledger.

One of these players is U.K.-based Innovate Finance, an independent group that looks to propel the nation’s role in financial technology development. Last Friday (Sept. 11), reports from CoinDesk said Innovate Finance is now planning to open up a research lab that will focus on the ways financial institutions can take advantage of the blockchain.

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The lab will open in partnership with IBM-founded research facility Hartree Centre, reports said, and is set to launch sometime next month.

“We are excited about the prospect of our members openly collaborating to deliver use cases to the wider community,” said Innovate Finance CEO Lawrence Wintermeyer in a statement. “If we can use the lab to develop open standards for the blockchain in financial services, we will be moving one step closer to accelerating the mass adoption of this breakthrough technology.”

The lab said that it plans to offer the first round of prototype use cases for blockchain technology by the end of the year. Members will explore practical uses for the blockchain, as well as how it can strengthen financial institutions’ compliance with know-your-customer and anti-money laundering regulations.

Other major financial institutions of the world have made moves to put the blockchain to new uses this year, too. UBS revealed only days ago that it will also be working to innovate in the space through the development of its own virtual currency aimed at helping other banks and financial institutions settle payments faster. The venture was launched in partnership with U.K.-based Clearmatics, which develops software on the blockchain to help companies clear and settle payments, reports said.

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