Banking News Travel & mobility

Russia’s largest bank, Sberbank, tokenizes travel agent payments using blockchain

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Russia’s S7 Airlines has partnered with Sberbank to automate travel agency payments using blockchain. A year ago, we reported that S7 Airlines reached $1 million in monthly payments on its blockchain settlement platform in association with Alfa Bank. It processed 1.5 billion roubles ($20 million) in the last seven months.

In the latest integration, the payments are automated using smart contracts, according to Air Transport Review. For travel agents with a Sberbank account, money in the travel agent’s account can be tokenized and transferred to S7. As a result, the travel agent doesn’t need to provide bank guarantees or pay in advance.

“The use of a virtual unit of account allowed Sberbank to solve a number of technical problems and create a universal tokenization platform, in which the process of issuing tokens is just one of many possibilities. At the same time, the process of ‘conversion’ is rather technical in nature, can occur seamlessly and imperceptibly for the user “, said Anatoly Popov, Sberbank’s Deputy Chairman.

We noted that the various news outlets didn’t call it a Sbercoin or digital currency.

At the end of July, Russia passed the Digital Financial Assets (DFA) Law, which encompasses monetary claims and digital securities. The law that comes into force next January specifies that only legal entities and sole proprietorships can issue DFAs.

Both the S7 Airline platform and the Sberbank tokenization solution are built using Hyperledger Fabric.

In 2018 Sberbank was involved in purchasing one of the first blockchain bonds using Russia’s National Settlement Depository’s (NSD) blockchain. More recently, the bank participated in a blockchain trade finance transaction with commodities company Trafigura.