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Alfa-Bank (Russia) joins the Marco Polo Network to pioneer trade finance with blockchain technology

March 07, 2019. TAG: Financial Services

Alfa-Bank today announced that it joined the Marco Polo Network, the largest and fastest growing trade finance network leveraging Corda blockchain technology to bring significant efficiencies in financing trade and working capital.

Marco Polo offers a state-of-the-art trade finance platform for global working capital needs delivering risk mitigation solutions around payment commitments, receivables financing and factoring solutions. The platform is powered by R3’s Corda blockchain technology and open Application Programming Interfaces (APIs) purpose-built for the global trade ecosystem. It allows banks to easily integrate into trade orchestrations bringing in ERP, procure to pay, logistics, payment, and insurance data real-time into the transactions.

Dina Merkulova, Head of Trade Finance, Alfa-Bank, said: “In line with our objective to offer to our clients the best trade and supply chain finance services, we are looking to leverage the newest technology, including open APIs and distributed ledger technology (DLT), to deliver end-to-end solutions, better customer experience and optimize international supply chain transactions”. “The Marco Polo Network is the most advanced and forward-looking trade finance and blockchain technology consortium which makes it the best partner to succeed,” she added.

Alfa-Bank joins BNP Paribas, Commerzbank, ING, LBBW, Anglo-Gulf Trade Bank, Standard Chartered Bank, Natixis, Bangkok Bank, SMBC, Danske Bank, NatWest, DNB, and OP Financial Group as a member of the largest network of commercial banks in the trade finance market.

Daniel Cotti, Managing Director, Center of Excellence, Banking & Trade for the Marco Polo Network said: “There are exciting times ahead for Marco Polo as the network is growing at an accelerating pace and benefits from the vision and wealth of expertise brought by the leading institutions joining the consortium.” He added: “We’re delighted to welcome Alfa-Bank as one of the major Russian banks and a key financial institution in Europe further expanding the reach of our network.”

David E. Rutter, CEO of R3 said: “The trade finance infrastructure that institutions rely on to do business are in need of an upgrade. By utilizing cutting-edge blockchain technology, the Marco Polo initiative will improve efficiency and transparency while offering Alfa-Bank access to a wide range of trade finance solutions.”

Alfa-Bank (Russia)

ABH Holdings S.A. (ABHH) is a privately owned Luxembourg-based investment holding company investing into several banking groups in the CIS and Europe. ABHH includes Alfa-Bank (Russia), Alfa-Bank (Ukraine), Ukrsotsbank (Ukraine), Alfa-Bank (Belarus), Alfa-Bank (Kazakhstan) and Amsterdam Trade Bank N.V.

Alfa-Bank (Russia), founded in 1990, has developed rapidly to become one of Russia's leading privately owned banks. It provides a full range of banking services — corporate banking, retail banking, investment banking, asset management and trade finance.