Category Archives: Deutsche Bundesbank

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Hyperledger Releases Cryptographic Toolbox for Developers

Hyperleadger Releases Ursa, A Cryptographic Toolbox For Developers

In an announcement yesterday, the Hyperledger’s Technical Steering Committee (TSC) unveiled a new project called Ursa, designed to be a cryptographic modular intended to help project developers within the Hyperledger blockchain community build resourceful applications seamlessly.

Ursa is being touted as a shared “flexible cryptographic library”, allowing developers to tap from a resource pool of development toolkits “so blockchain developers can choose and modify their cryptographic schemes with a simple configuration file change”. This would invariably save time and cost in building individual projects.

The TSC revealed that the library has two distinct modules: the first being “a library for modular, flexible, and standardized basic cryptographic algorithms” and a second library for more exotic cryptography, including so-called “smart” signatures and zero knowledge primitives called zmix.

In the announcement, TSC identified Ursa’s security experts as developers who currently handle Hyperledger Indy, Sawtooth, and Fabric. Other community members include academic cryptographers.

Hyperledger expects the library to simplify the processes of developing projects with the objective of avoiding duplicates, cutting down development costs, improving security, and creating a platform for expert reviews. Further, the ease to use model lowers the entry barrier for inexperienced developers.

On a broader event scale, Hyperledger has been used for both institutional and commercial purposes. Sberbank recently conducted an over-the-counter (OTC) foreign exchange by deploying smart contracts on the Hyperledger platform. More so, last month, retail company Carrefour deployed organic poultry tracking system on the Hyperledger DLT.

Germany’s central bank, Deutsche Bundesbank, in collaboration with Deutsche Börse, also successfully completed two blockchain trials developed on the Hyperledger Fabric to test potential applications in securities settlements, transactions, and payments, as well as bond repayments.

 

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Siemens Invests $681 Million in Blockchain and Fintech City

The largest industrial manufacturing company in Europe, AG Siemens, has announced that it will invest USD 681 million into a center for the study and development of blockchain, artificial intelligence, and other innovative technologies.

The German giant has planned to use Berlin as the site for what it will call SiemensStadt (Siemens City) on a 70 hectares site in an industrial zone in the suburb of Spandau. The concept will eventually metamorphose into a science park linking history to the area where the company found its roots back in the 19th century as the site of some of Siemens AG’s first factories.

The long-term project, set for completion in 2030, will see the initial buildings develop into a technology park and base for new startups, making an important link between business, innovation and science. A major focus on the development of both blockchain and AI technologies has been earmarked as essential moving forward. Other areas of development which will take place in SiemensStadt will include data analysis, the development of electric vehicles, distributed power systems, and energy management.

Despite Siemens announcing job losses last month to the tune of 2,900 staff due to restructuring, the company has stated that the new project will provide employment for hundreds. Berlin’s mayor, Michael Müller, suggested that “the city’s status as a scientific center would be boosted by the investment”.

It has been a productive year for Germany on the fintech front, with the country’s central bank, Deutsche Bundesbank, successfully completing two blockchain trials during its collaboration with Deutsche Börse, owner of the Frankfurt Stock Exchange. The two blockchain prototypes were designed to test the technology’s potential in securities settlements, transactions, and payments, as well as bond repayments.

Earlier in 2018, Germany’s second-largest stock exchange, Boerse Stuttgart took the step to host Crypto Trading and Coin Offerings, following the announcement that its new Bison app would be released later this year by fintech company Sowa Labs, a subsidiary of Boerse Stuggart Digital Ventures.

 

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German Central Bank Hails “Success” of Two Blockchain Trials

Germany’s central bank, Deutsche Bundesbank, has successfully completed two blockchain trials during its collaboration with Deutsche Börse, owner of the Frankfurt Stock Exchange.

The two blockchain prototypes were designed to test the technology’s potential in securities settlements, transactions, and payments, as well as bond repayments.

A joint press release on Thursday reveals that these aims were ”successfully” achieved, with the prototypes facilitating “productive operation of a realistic financial market infrastructure”.

Developed on Hyperledger Fabric and created by Digital Asset, the prototypes come from a joint blockchain research project dubbed BLOCKBASTER. The collaboration came together with the goal of developing a blockchain framework to transfer and settle securities and fiat currency.

The press release pointed to the recent upgrades on both Hyperledger Fabric and Digital Assets, saying they may well benefit the performance or the prototypes further if they are updated.

Berthold Kracke, CEO of Clearstream Banking and head of Clearstream Global Operations at Deutsche Börse Group, praised the tests for proving that blockchain can be the basis for financial settlement applications, as well as potentially for other financial infrastructures.

Burkhard Balz, member of the executive board at Deutsche Bundesbank, said that the positive results have encouraged them to continue experimenting with relevant blockchain use cases and pursue the implementation of the two prototypes further, citing that in particular, he sees a future use for them in processing ”high-volume applications”.

Blaz noted that permissioned blockchains have proven to serve the needs of the financial sector well, while Kracke finished, ”We are very happy with the results of the project… we were able to tailor the product to the needs of the industry.”

Deutsche Bundesbank is not the only central bank conducting blockchain tests, with the likes of Canada and South Africa already hosting similar trials.

 

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