23 May 2017 14:59

SEB takes part ownership in blockchain company R3

SEB takes part ownership and becomes the biggest Nordic investor in newly formed blockchain company R3, which develops infrastructure for financial services based on principles behind the blockchain. "It is a strategic investment with high business value," said David Sonnek, SEB Ventures.

SEB has, since 2015, been a member of the Distributed Ledger Group (DLG), an international banking cooperation connected to a technical platform developed by the American blockchain company R3. 

Work so far has been in the form of a fee-based collaborative consortium, but this is now being replaced by ownership in a newly formed holding company. R3 as well as over 40 investors, representing an equal geographic split across Europé, Asia-Pacific and the Americas. 

Distributed ledger

The base of operations is the development of an infrastructure platform called Corda. It builds on the principle of the distributed ledger, meaning that two players, for example, a seller and a buyer, have a shared, protected and verified ledger. When the transaction is completed, it is automatically registered for both parties and therefore does not need to go through a third-party clearing. 

“We see a clear business value in being on this platform, which has the potential to become part of a new global infrastructure. This is something that we as individual bank cannot develop ourselves.”