IBM signs 6 banking clients for its blockchain-based payments network; announces stablecoin partnership

IBM announced today that its global payment network, IBM Blockchain World Wire, has "enabled payment locations in 72 countries, with 47 currencies and 44 banking endpoints" and that it has signed letters of intent with six global banks including Banco Bradesco, Bank Busan, and Rizal Commercial Banking Corporation to issue their own stablecoins on IBM Blockchain World Wire. 

Launched in September 2018, IBM Blockchain World Wire is a payment network built on the Stellar blockchain. Its goal is to clear and settle cross-border payments in real-time.

"We've created a new type of payment network designed to accelerate remittances and transform cross-border payments to facilitate the movement of money in countries that need it most," said Marie Wieck, General Manager, IBM Blockchain. "By creating a network where financial institutions support multiple digital assets, we expect to spur innovation and improve financial inclusion worldwide."

In addition, IBM is also partnering with crypto startup Stronghold to issue U.S.-backed stablecoins on IBM Blockchain World Wire. According to a statement issued by Stronghold, instead of "using traditional banking intermediaries to transmit payments" on IBM Blockchain World Wire, IBM's clients can use Stronghold USD to facilitate settlement. In 2018, Stronghold launched the Stronghold USD, a U.S. dollar token 100% backed by funds on deposit with a qualified SEC custodian. 

"As a financial institution, we're in a unique position to innovate when it comes to enabling instant settlement for payments," said Stronghold CEO and co-founder Tammy Camp. "Integrating our technology with IBM Blockchain World Wire represents a paradigm shift for payment processors."