A cashless economy encourages widespread adoption of digital technology

Published: Oct 25, 2017 01:06:52 AM IST
Updated: Oct 25, 2017 11:11:32 AM IST

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Today, making a money transfer or making a purchase at a store is as simple as a few clicks using one of the many digital payment options. In fact, you do not even need a bank account to do this, just a cellphone number is enough to get started! Widespread digitization – a result of India’s transition to a cashless economy, is giving rise to innovative Fintech companies while parallelly spawning a growing ecosystem of consumers and service providers.

Fintech is “unbundling banking services”, by creating personalized digital offerings, out of a single business process offered by banks today. The offerings are typically characterized with minimal documentation, easy-to-use digital interfaces and, most importantly, significant reduction in time and costs, which have historically led customers to leverage non-institutionalized financial services.

With Fintechs playing disruptor, banks throughout the world have realized its potential and are collaborating with fintech companies instead of resisting them as competition. With trust and immutability at the heart of financial services, Blockchain, has emerged as the quintessential technology backbone of digital currencies, global trade and supply chain dependent companies. As Fintech democratizes financial services, banks will become inclusive; placing the customer’s needs at its core and enabling them with greater choice.
 
Look at instances where blockchain is reinventing.
Transferring money overseas?
Today, money you transfer does not go directly to a recipient’s bank – instead, it goes through several banks, validating trust along the way. This adds a cost to the transaction as well as delays the transfer. Blockchain validates trust and simplifies this process by allowing two banks to exchange money directly and instantaneously. Leading remittance networks include Ripple and IBM’s Global Financial Transaction Network.

Unsure of your investment?

As customers, we’re constantly seeking quality and value in the investments we make and the goods we purchase. To transact without worry, trust and transparency must be established. For instance, if the country’s bullion records could be on a blockchain, it’s net worth by virtue of its characteristics would be immutable and transparent. You could buy or sell with complete trust and even verify the authenticity of your purchase. Imagine being able to track a precious metal back to the distributor or all the way to the mine! Leading solutions include the Diamond Blockchain called Everledger.

Get to know your customer better
Signzy, an innovative startup , has built a digital trust platform for banks that uses A.I and blockchain technology to verify identification and remove the tedious process of verifying KYC documents. leverages , Watson’s Natural language processing , and visual recognition capabilities to analyze unstructured contents of identification documents to validate authenticity. Such a digital trust platform can potentially cut verification time for banks by 80 percent, shortening the process from two weeks to just two days!

Claim your insurance faster
One of the largest insurance companies in India, uses the power of blockchain to enable faster payment of travel insurance claims to its customers. Customers can buy insurance using their portals which are also connected to the airline information system. Delays or cancellations of flights are tracked in real time from airline companies and corresponding claims are automatically paid to customer’s bank account on verification of booking.

Start innovating with Blockchain
Owing to the rapid adoption of blockchain, we’ll soon be part of trusted and immutable networks that simplify experience with any transaction; be it making one or redressing one. With Fintech being at the forefront of blockchain adoption, there is immense potential for innovative companies to.

Blockchain is helping reshape not just finance but industries in domains as varied as healthcare, government and manufacturing. If you’re thinking about the next big supply chain, transaction or finance-led idea, it’s clear which technology you should start considering.

-By Jitan Chandanani, Blockchain Leader, IBM India / South Asia.


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