South Korean giants Shinhan Bank and KT have collaborated on the development of a blockchain platform to exploit digital vouchers, which will be introduced by regional governments.
Shinhan Bank, the second South Korean bank in terms of total assets, announced on Wednesday that it signed an agreement with the telecommunications company KT to jointly build a blockchain-based solution, according to The Korea Times. The new platform aims to benefit from the intentions recently announced by regional governments to launch digital coupons. Vouchers can replace liquidity in some areas, and local governments have declared at the beginning of 2018 that they would introduce digital vouchers to revive local economies in South Korea.
According to the agreement, KT should develop a blockchain platform and a network system while Shinhan Bank is responsible for creating the relevant financial solutions such as payment and account systems to be integrated with the platform.
Jang Hyeon-ki, the head of Shinhan's digital strategy unit, commented:
"Shinhan's strategic partnership with KT is a part of our efforts to introduce a convergence between finance and ICT. Blockchain technology will update customers' financial assets to a new level. "
Shinhan, based in Seoul, is the first Korean bank to raise awareness of the potential of distributed ledger technology (DLT), another name for blockchain. The bank established a research center focused on blockchain under its digital strategy department. Shinhan is leveraging technology to develop an integrated certification system for financial transactions such as online wire transfers and Forex.
KT, Korea's largest telecommunications company, also showed interest in the blockchain. Last month, we reported that telecommunications had developed the world's first blockchain-based commercial network.
Speaking of the partnership with Shinhan Bank, Kim Hak-joon, director of KT Platform Service, said:
"The partnership with Shinhan Bank will be the opportunity to expand the boundaries of KT blockchain technology in the industry KT will continue to do its best to contribute to the national blockchain industry. "
Shinhan Bank, the main branch of Shinhan Financial Group, is the oldest bank in South Korea, founded in 1897 as Hanseong Bank. Last year, the bank began developing its BTC portfolio and the vault system. In February of this year, Shinhan carried out blockchain tests in collaboration with Ripple Labs.