Sberbank has become the first Russian bank to carry out a payment transaction using the blockchain technology, which allows transfers within a few seconds.
The transaction was conducted on the IBM Blockchain platform based on HyperLedger Fabric. According to Sberbank, its own IT infrastructure was used during the procedure. MegaFon, MegaLabs, Alfa-Bank, and IBM have also participated in the transaction.
“The blockchain solution created by Sberbank has allowed us to make the first pilot payment transaction – using IBM Blockchain technology – in the history of the Russian banking industry,” said Sberbank CIB Managing Director Stella Kudachkina.
She added that “the advantage of using this technology when performing settlements is the high speed at which transfers are made: after the money is sent the transaction is recorded on the receiver’s account almost instantly, in real time, unlike the traditional system that is used to make transfers.”
The blockchain is a specifically designed platform that allows two or more partners to enter into a smart contract without an intermediary. The technology may also be used to verify contracts, intellectual property rights and online public ledgers without a third party.
In August media reported that banks in Russia were considering safer and faster transactions by adopting blockchain technology. The country's biggest lenders, including Sberbank and VTB Group, have reportedly developed a distributed ledger called Masterchain.