The Chinese e-commerce giant, Alibaba’s financial affiliate Ant Financial is launching a blockchain BaaS (Backend-as-a-Service) platform as reported by local news outlet China Money Network as of 21st September.
The news was formally announced by Ant Financial’s Vice President Jiang Guoefei at the Ant Technology Exploration Conference (ATEC) in Hangzhou yesterday. The new BaaS platform is being introduced in tandem with an enterprise-focused “ant blockchain partner program” that will actively enable small- and medium-scale businesses to execute and innovate new blockchain solutions.
Based on the formal announcement made, Gueofei characterized the technology as a move to open up Ant’s in-house technologies to the entire commercial sector. The excerpts from the announcement: “In the past two years, Ant Financial has been working on two aspects about blockchain. One is to improve the technology, and the other is to open it up and accelerate the commercialization of blockchain applications.”
As part of its momentum to commercialize the technology, Ant Financial experienced its very first blockchain payments earlier this summer through the use of its newly-developed blockchain-based electronic wallet cross-border remittance service. The trial reflected a transfer of funds between Ant Financial’s AliPayHK, i.e. the Hong Kong version of Ant’s renowned mobile payment app Alipay and Filipinopayment app GCash.
Amid this Jack Ma, the founder of Alibaba has signaled an increased inclusion of AliPay in blockchain for numerous years. With this Ant Financial most recently secured almost $14 billion in funding for the technology’s development in June this year.
Additionally, recent data broadcasted late in August revealed that Alibaba had applied first place globally on a new list that ranked entities by the number of blockchain-related patents filed to date. Besides this, the e-commerce giant has filed an astounding 90 such patents gaining over IBM.
However, Ma circulated a keynote lecture earlier this month in which he stated that blockchain is one of the best-advanced technologies that still needs to prove its authenticity that they can help evolve society in a “greener and more inclusive” direction.