Bank of Ireland and Deloitte announce blockchain proof-of-concept focused on trade reporting

Bank of Ireland and Deloitte have today announced the completion of a joint proof-of-concept trial using blockchain technology which demonstrates how financial institutions can combine the technology with their existing systems to provide next generation client experience and regulatory oversight at a lower cost.

The trial highlighted the significant benefits that a blockchain implementation can bring to financial institutions by providing an accessible data layer that sits over existing systems, connecting these systems to form a single, real-time view of the customer and transaction. Full implementation would make it practically impossible to alter transaction histories and meets many impending regulatory requirements. EC regulation such as the Markets in Financial Instruments repealing Directive (MiFID II) will be applicable from January 2018, introducing a new regulatory framework across EU States particularly in relation to high frequency trading.

The trial combined synthetized data from multiple systems across Bank of Ireland’s Global Markets division and associated functions to form an immutable, distributed, searchable repository of information across the full trade cycle. Browser-based views were developed for clients, Relationship Managers, and Regulator, to provide enhanced views of trade position with the ability to conduct near real-time auditing. Deloitte worked closely with Bank of Ireland throughout the project providing expertise in blockchain solution design and development.

Discussing the proof-of-concept trial, David Tighe, Head of Innovation at Bank of Ireland said: “Bank of Ireland is constantly investigating how technology and innovation can improve the customer experience, while also ensuring that systems and procedures address changes in regulatory requirements being introduced across Europe. We are pleased with how our research with Deloitte has progressed to date and we look forward to bringing it to the next stage as we explore how it can be integrated further.”

David Dalton, Partner and Head of Financial Services at Deloitte said “The trial demonstrates the disruptive impact that blockchain can have on the financial services industry, and the positive results that this disruption can bring. We are excited to have developed this proof of concept with Bank of Ireland, and believe that this can be built upon further to capitalise on the wealth of blockchain technology-based opportunities.”

Blockchain technology, which underpins emerging digital, virtual, or crypto currencies, consists of blocks that hold timestamped batches of recent valid transactions, which form a chain, with each block reinforcing those preceding it. In conducting the trial, Bank of Ireland was responsible for providing its expertise in trade processes and front-end development while Deloitte conducted the evaluation, development, and testing of the prototype. Development was completed using a fully open-source platform.

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