Blockchain integrating with Italian banking sector
Interview with Stefano Rossi for B3 – Blockchain Business Board
In a private sit-down Stefano Rossi, Blockchain Research Consultant, discusses the ongoing activities his company is undergoing throughout Europe.
Could you briefly describe B3 and your ongoing activities?
B3 started two years ago as an international Blockchain Technology research program with the aim of exploring how business models could evolve in line with Blockchain technology innovations. At present time, we are focusing on Blockchain Education, Research and Projects. We will be hosting the fourth Blockhain Academy in Milan on May 21-22 and we will also participate as panelists at BlockShow, Berlin on May 28-29. As we speak we are also participating at one of the most ambitious European Blockchain projects, known as SIAChain.
Can you describe your work within the SIAChain Project?
We started collaborating with SIA and GFT Italy at the end of 2016 as consultants for the SIAChain project. The working group managed to bring together the top Italian banks discussing Blockchain at the same table which we believe is a remarkable step towards spreading innovation in the financial industry.
What is the scope of the project and what are the major partners from the banking sector involved in the network?
Initially, the scope of the project relied on a very specific use case, while during the project advancements and the arrival of R3 as a partner, the project widened its scope and started becoming more ambitious. SIA Group started deploying SIAChain over 600 nodes across its network that will run R3 Corda for using CorDapps. The leading banking groups in Italy and Europe are currently involved but we cannot give out the names.
How does SIA distinguish itself from other DLT networks in the financial sector?
SIA Group created a private infrastructure called SIAChain to develop, in a secure and protected manner, innovative Blockchain applications based on Distributed Ledger Technology (DLT). The SIAChain infrastructure can count on almost 600 network nodes in Europe. Having such a distributed network helps to secure and managing applications. This is going to be one of the largest distributed networks in Europe running blockchain-like applications.
What are the particular challenges of this project in terms of the transition to blockchain technology?
Since the beginning, banks stressed the importance to integrate Blockchain within their current legacy systems. GFT Italy is taking care of developing and integrating use-case driven seamless business applications to make the transition as smooth as possible. Of course, banks will need to adapt to new business logic applications in the near future but this integration path is fundamental.
In terms of the future, how long do you envision it will take for the banking sector to fully embrace and adopt blockchain technologies?
This is the million-dollar question nobody has ever answered, yet. Along with this project we are working on several proprietary projects and we see there’s an increasing openness in terms of adopting Blockchain compared to 2016. It’s a matter of finding the best use case/blockchain technology approach to fully embrace and adopt it further. Every day we are one step closer to blockchain adoption.