Today Chinese digital bank WeBank announced that it has partnered with Singapore government-backed OpenNodes to bring China’s FISCO BCOS blockchain to Singapore. When FISCO BCOS was launched in 2018, it had a stated aim of being China’s answer to Hyperledger Fabric.
The enterprise blockchain protocol was developed and open sourced by the Financial Blockchain Shenzhen Consortium (FISCO). The consortium is backed by more than 100 Chinese organizations, including JD Finance, Huawei, ZTE, WeChat owner Tencent, and WeBank, which was founded by Tencent (currently has 30% stake).
This is a first step in taking FISCO BCOS outside of China’s borders. FISCO BCOS was also the first blockchain supported by the Blockchain Service Network, China’s national infrastructure, which also has international ambitions.
The initial target group is to introduce students from some of Singapore’s leading universities to FISCO BCOS. Referring to the collaboration, WeBank’s Henry Ma, EVP and CIO said: “Combining forces is the first stepping stone to expanding the consortium into Southeast Asia, and ensures we are well fed by a constant source of knowledge, technology expertise, and domain experience.”
OpenNodes is an ecosystem that helps to educate corporates and link them with technology providers. Numerous tech companies are stakeholders, including IBM, R3, ConsenSys and Ethereum, as well as corporates such as BMW, PWC and Singapore stock exchange SGX. It’s run by the Tribe Accelerator, and funded by Singapore’s Infocomm Media Development Authority (IMDA) with other government stakeholders.
“Having a digital banking trailblazer like WeBank join our OpenNodes ecosystem opens new doors for our partners, and most importantly the student ecosystem since FISCO BCOS offers them an exciting opportunity to create and turn their ideas into reality using blockchain,” says Ng Yi Ming, Managing Partner of Tribe Accelerator which operates OpenNodes.
WeBank recently announced plans to integrate the DAML smart contract language from Digital Asset with the FISCO BCOS blockchain. The blockchain technology has been used in some substantial projects given its large backers. For example, Tencent was behind the Shenzhen digital tax invoice platform that has issued more than $1 billion in invoices. And WeBank has launched a car database amongst other solutions.