Capital markets News

Crédit Agricole in tokenized SME bond trials with Bank of Italy

italy dlt blockchain tokenization

The Bank of Italy’s Fintech Milano Hub is running a series of DLT trials, with one of them targeting debt instruments issued by Italian SMEs, including bonds. The tokenized bond solution is led by technology provider BlockInvest which is backed by Crédit Agricole. It will involve a consortium of Crédit Agricole Italy, its wealth management subsidiary Indosuez, neobank Illimity, and Deloitte.

The aim is to empower individuals to invest in the SME debt instruments. While the offering will be accessible on public blockchain (BlockInvest uses Ethereum and Polygon), only accredited investors will be able to buy the tokens.

BlockInvest also aims to explore a potential secondary market using its own blockchain standard to ensure interoperability between the issuers’ tokens.

Last month Deloitte Italy unveiled its Open Token Factory initiative providing a platform for clients to tokenize assets in collaboration with BlockInvest. The real world assets that can be tokenized include real estate, non-performing loans and debt, amongst others.

This tokenized bond project was one of fourteen DLT initiatives that the Bank of Italy selected for its trials, and it plans to work with the organizations over the next six months.

Meanwhile, in a separate initiative, last month Crédit Agricole announced a joint blockchain bond issuance platform, so|bond, in collaboration with SEB. It uses its own semi-permissioned public blockchain.

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