Banking News

Standard Chartered invests in Cobalt FX distributed ledger platform

foreign exchange fx currency

Today it was announced that Standard Chartered has invested in the Cobalt foreign exchange (FX) post-trade platform after signing up as a customer in February. Cobalt uses distributed ledger technology (DLT).

Six months ago, Citi went live on the platform, having invested back in 2016. Other major investors include IHS Markit and the Singapore Exchange, and significant platform users are Deutsche Bank and Saxo Bank.

Cobalt Announcement

Note: we are experimenting with some articles, publishing the announcement, sometimes prefixed with a brief commentary.

The foreign exchange (FX) post-trade infrastructure provider Cobalt, has announced the expansion of its bank investors with Standard Chartered as its latest backer. Having signed as a client on Cobalt’s platform in February, Standard Chartered now joins Citi as an investor in Cobalt’s expanding network.

By creating a single version of a trade and checking credit in real-time Cobalt is able to cut operational costs and reduce credit, settlement and operational risk.

Credit is currently over-allocated in the market and represents significant systemic risk and the Cobalt solution allows for dynamic credit allocation across clients and counterparties to allow full compliance with the FX Global Code.

Bringing new technology into post-trade, Cobalt delivers a high availability, high throughput platform which enables full automation of the trade lifecycle, without the need for additional downstream reconciliation.

Cobalt’s technology has multiple lenses and is able to service interbank, prime, buy-side and bank-to-client relationships. With information security standards on par with a Tier 1 bank, Cobalt allows banks to brand the technology to use for their own clients.

Gareth James, Macro COO from Standard Chartered: “We see Cobalt as being a core part of our FX operating platform, enabling Standard Chartered to reduce risk and costs by automating manual processes across the bank and therefore improving services to our clients. This investment shows our confidence in the platform and we look forward to continuing to grow our relationship with Cobalt.”

Darren Coote, CEO at Cobalt: “The past few months have been a tumultuous time for the financial markets with market participants realising quickly that their current infrastructures were not fit for the new normal. During this period Cobalt’s solutions have continued to allow our network to operate at ease as well as reducing their all-important operating costs.”

“We welcome Standard Chartered as our latest client investor and look forward to continuing to work with them in this new capacity, to both improve our services and extend our offering, with a particular focus on the emerging markets.”


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