On India’s Growing Appetite for Blockchain

There is more room for Blockchain technology to grow in Asia’s second largest economy, India.

Though the technology is still in its nascent stage, it has made in-roads into multiple industries globally, including in India where its potential to create widespread impact in the banking and financial services industry is becoming more visible and garnering interests.

The interests have increased the number of Blockchain-based use cases that could drive operational efficiency and improve customer experience in India’s financial services industry, says the Chief Information Officer of India’s fifth largest private sector bank, YES BANK, Anup Purohit.

“There are multiple experiments being performed on distributed ledger technology, like testing the use of smart contracts leading to self-executable contracts, transforming the age old letter of credit, or streamlining and shortening the trade finance process without much intermediary intervention or KYC processing etc.”

The bank, which has leveraged technology to offer an improved banking experience, is one of those showing interest in Blockchain for its efficient processes, transparency, security and seamless connections to maintain records and make quicker transactions.

Purohit explains that they are creating a Blockchain banking solution for their clients which would have an immediate, measurable impact, and provide a quantum leap compared to the current process.

Purohit states via email:

“Consequently, we were the first in the industry to implement a multi-nodal Blockchain transaction to fully digitize vendor financing for one of our corporate customers. The entire debate rests on the capability of banks to develop solutions on existing technology and customize it for domestic retail/corporate customers, which we believe, Indian banks are fully geared towards. Innovative developments on new technologies like Blockchain helps us offer better solutions to our customers, improve their business operations and strengthen our banking relations with them.”

Along with the Bank’s accelerator program - YES FINTECH - in support of early stage Blockchain startups - there is its second cohort launch scheduled for later this year. It believes more Indian companies will improve their product and scale operations with time. In addition to its Blockchain solution for Vendor Financing, the bank has also partnered with Ripple for remittance-based solutions built on the Blockchain platform.

For the CEO of Auxesis Group, Akash Gaurav, the advent of Blockchain through Bitcoin has “created a spark of a new era of technology through which humanity can be completely redesigned.” He adds that the technology is driving most credible research in the history of computer science. Gaurav’s company has been working with some North Indian states to build their benefits management systems and also supports the government to launch the first VISA card powered by Blockchain in South India.

“I would say India has started creating its mark due to active participation and support from the state governments. Project like AuxLedger, which now have 53 mln IDs, is one of the largest Blockchain projects developed in the world. India also has its own BankChain which is a consortium of banks initiated by the State Bank of India to take this effort forward, as it believes that it is essential for banks to collaborate and develop Blockchain solutions for the betterment of the financial sector. Interest has been shown by many other banks such as Axis, YES, HDFC etc.”

- Akash Gaurav, CEO of Auxesis Group

Recently named as one of the top 100 most influential Blockchain companies in the world, Auxesis Group started from IIT Bombay with presence in London and San Francisco.

The Co-Founder of Cxihub, which is now completing what’s been described as India's first peer to peer Bitcoin exchange for launch in October, says the startup is exploring the Blockchain market by trading Bitcoins after having studied the technology “...and found out that this could do wonders. So now we have one major goal: that we won’t let India lag in the Blockchain rush.”

Abhishek Bourai says:

“India has been resistant to new tech, always. And a Bitcoin exchange is our first step to get involved in the Blockchain rush. We are also building a Blockchain community in India which will give Indian Bitcoin/Blockchain enthusiasts and developers a platform where anyone facing issues can take help from the community. And in this way everyone could contribute to the Blockchain.”


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