Westpac aims to consolidate itself as a global leader in blockchain technology, developing one of the first proof-of-concept in the world that digitizes inventory management, procurement and trade.
The platform integrates the Internet of things sensors, data analysis, artificial intelligence and blockchain to create a system able to forecast the increase in demand and prices of goods and to automate manual procurement and payment processes.
The use of blockchain technology has allowed the creation of intelligent contracts able to execute stock orders automatically, while artificial intelligence is used to identify the right moment and place to make a purchase.
The general manager of Westpac for companies and institutional banks Didier Van Not The Australian Financial Review there was no guarantee that the bank would commercialize the platform, saying that the new technologies had to first to mature, but believed that it was important for the bank is a leading position in the development of the blockchain.
"I want Westpac to be seen as a thought leader in this space," he said.
"I am trying to automate as much as possible with Westpac over time and use more data analysis and offer services like this to more of our institutional clients.
" The company in Australia calls for insights into their activities and the data we have on their sectors can have such a big impact and be packaged in such a way as to provide further information. It is not about selling data, but about generating intuitions. "
Westpac collaborated with the IT consulting firm Infosys to develop the proof-of-concept, based on the R3 Corda blockchain technology.
the two companies three months to develop the new platform of supply, for which he also collaborated with corporate clients to reinforce steel suppliers Ausreo, IVE and Iluka.
Van Not said that the project originated from the Westpac commercial finance team, which I had not seen much innovation in procurement space, after comparing customers with the weaknesses faced in procurement.
"Many people had already made improvements using blockchain, or artificial intelligence, but we looked at what we could do if we married these technologies together," he said .
"I am a traditional banker, so for me it was like being a caveman coming out of the light. I went to conferences and people were talking about a future where machines would help people make better decisions. This was a strong glimpse of that future. "
The new proof-of-concept comes after Westpac joined forces with ANZ, IBM and the operator of the Scentre Group shopping mall last year to try digitizing the warranty process banking used for commercial real estate leasing
In 2017, the bank was also one of the 40 global banks to invest a total of $ US107 million in R3 – the global consortium that developed distributed accounting technology.
Westpac identified challenges in commercializing concept demonstration such as storing and displaying data quantities, availability and quality of data, customizing artificial intelligence algorithms for different industries and businesses, and widespread use of private blockchains such as R3 or Hyperledger
marketed, would put the bank in competition with existing software solutions such as SAP Ariba.
Mr Van Not finally said that the bank will not see us as a technological society.
"Looking at the bank today, we are a technology company with a banking license," he said.
"That's why we're spending time with developers, doing this test -of the concept and talking about these things at conferences."