Chinese payment giant Ant Financial, a subsidiary of Alibaba and operator of AliPay, is set to publicly launch its enterprise blockchain platform next month.
Guofei Jiang, vice president of Ant Financial, announced the news at the company’s annual media meeting, Mars Finance reported Wednesday. The blockchain platform, dubbed Ant Blockchain Open Alliance, has been available in beta form since last November.
Jiang said the platform will help small and micro enterprises to develop their own blockchain applications at a lower cost. He further said that the platform can support 1 billion daily transactions and can achieve 100,000 cross-chain information processing capabilities per second.
So far, the blockchain platform has reportedly helped resolved trust issues across 40 sectors, including cross-border remittances and trade finance.
Jiang believes that blockchain is the “most valuable” technology in the current era. "We believe that in the future, blockchain will change people's production and life like mobile payments and become the infrastructure of the digital economy,” he said.
Ant Blockchain Open Alliance was beta launched in November, with key goals as “low-cost, low-threshold, trusted and multi-value networks.” While the platform’s name includes the word “open,” Ant Financial’s senior director of technology, Jieli Li, said at the time that not everyone will be able to run the network’s nodes.
“As for the selection of node operators, we are more cautious. [...] Because to form a credible value network, not only do they need to be a consensus accounting node, but they also need to provide authoritative endorsements,” Jieli said at the time.
Chinese companies have been going gung-ho about blockchain. All major tech giants of the country - Alibaba, Baidu, JD and Tencent, - have either announced or launched their blockchain platforms. Earlier this week, Baidu launched the public beta for its "Xuperchain" open-network blockchain. The network allows users to deploy a blockchain application for as low as 1 Chinese yuan (~$0.14) until March.
Tencent and JD have also published white papers on their proposed blockchain-as-a-service platforms.
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