Benjamin Soh, founder of blockchain development firm STACS, said that institutional players, not business-to-consumer companies, will drive the mass adoption of financial infrastructure built on blockchain technology. 

During the Unitize virtual conference, Soh said that if they could bring bank institutions to use the blockchain, millions of bank customers will automatically be a part of the blockchain finance infrastructure without them even knowing.

Providing bank customers with a blockchain-based wallet while still using the traditional payment gateways will be the necessary first step towards bringing the efficiencies of distributed ledger technology to the financial system, Soh added.

Asia is leading in blockchain finance

Speaking about the development of blockchain-based finance in Singapore, Soh noted that except for Switzerland, there are hardly any other European countries that are as supportive of blockchain finance as Singapore. 

According to Soh, Singapore is the closest to fully replacing the current financial infrastructure with one based on distributed ledger technology.

He also highlighted that the governments of other Asian countries like Malaysia, Thailand, China, Japan, and South Korea were taking strong initiatives to bring distributed ledger technology into finance. 

Reflecting on a similar point, Vinay Mohan, one of the early members of ConsenSys Singapore, said that the more SMEs and retail users gain access to democratized finance, the more mature Asia’s financial infrastructure will become. 

Mohan stated that due to the complex nature of current banking infrastructure, 70% of South-East Asian SMEs struggle with proper digital financial services and the advent of blockchain and central bank digital currencies may pave the way to deliver banking services to those Asian businesses and users.