Blockchain ‘world first’ for Guernsey’s financial services sector

Guernsey’s financial services sector has been unveiled as the location for the first-ever commercial use of blockchain technology for the private equity market,

Northern Trust, the island’s largest fund administrator, has built what is calls the “security-rich” blockchain with experts from IBM, working with the States of Guernsey and the Guernsey Financial Commission. It will be used to manage the administration of a private equity fund, domiciled in Guernsey, managed by Unigestion, a Switzerland-based asset manager with US$20bn in assets under management.

Guernsey’s Economic Development deputy president Peter Ferbrache, said in a statement announcing the deal, that the blockchain launch represented an “exciting opportunity”, that could see the Crown Dependency bring in future business in this new growing, specialised sector of the industry.

“Blockchain technology is set to be used increasingly used and further developed by financial services providers across the globe in the coming years, so for Guernsey to be home to the first commercial venture of its kind in the world is not only very exciting, but is also a testament to the sort of high value innovation government wants to encourage, to help drive economic growth and economic diversification,” he said.

‘New technologies’

Resources Committee president Deputy Gavin St Pier, pointed that Guernsey has been “at the forefront” of innovation in the financial industry “for many years”.

“As a jurisdiction we continually monitor new technologies, support in developing ground-breaking new ideas and provide a supportive environment where products can not only flourish but be first-to-market,” said St Pier.

“[The fact] that Northern Trust has partnered with IBM to provide a secure cloud solution with a high level of cryptography to protect investor data, shows the commitment of [Guernsey] government to being at the cutting edge of financial services technology.”

ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Gary Robinson
Deputy Editor, International Investment and Head of Video at Open Door Media Publishing. A fully qualified journalist and filmmaker with more than 20 years' financial services experience, both as journalist and originally as an IFA.

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