Payment Methods

‘Promise’ Startup Wants To Replace ACH


A white paper has revealed a master plan to replace the U.S.'s Automated Clearing House (ACH) network.

Promise: A Decentralized, Peer-to-Peer, Proxy Repayment Protocol,” “appears to be a replacement for the entire ACH system of banking,” Taariq Lewis, the founder of multiple blockchain startups and the SF Cryptocurrency Devs engineers meetup, wrote in a note to Coindesk in early August.

“It's really strange,” he said. “We received a copy of the white paper attached, anonymously. We’re not sure who wrote it, but it looks interesting.”

While the cryptocurrency and blockchain industry has been talking about taking on the U.S.’s Automated Clearing House (ACH) network for years, replacing it will be no easy feat. Last month it was reported that ACH Network volume surpassed 2 billion transactions in August, an increase of more than 10 percent compared to the previous year. NACHA — The Electronic Payments Association said the value of the payments was $4.5 trillion, an increase of 12 percent compared to last year.

These numbers mean that the ACH Network is on track to add more than 1 billion new payments for the fourth consecutive year.

“The ACH Network is thriving, and has achieved a milestone of more than 2 billion payments in one month,” said Jane Larimer, chief operating officer of NACHA. “This impressive growth demonstrates that businesses and consumers are choosing to use ACH payments.”

But a new paper published on Wednesday (October 31), titled “Stronger Promises,” expands on the original proposal for a blockchain employing “proxy re-signing,” which will allegedly bring the payment capabilities offered by ACH to the blockchain. And the paper details additional features that would make the new system more appealing to businesses--namely privacy and quantum resistance.

“This is a business chain that's going to last another 100 years,” said Lewis.

The paper goes on to explain that the new system is expected to launch in late 2019 or early 2020.



The September 2020 Leveraging The Digital Banking Shift Study, PYMNTS examines consumers’ growing use of online and mobile tools to open and manage accounts as well as the factors that are paramount in building and maintaining trust in the current economic environment. The report is based on a survey of nearly 2,200 account-holding U.S. consumers.