Mauritius looks to blockchain for financial inclusion boost
The State Bank of Mauritius, SBM Group and SALT, creator of a blockchain-backed loan platform, have entered into an exploratory relationship to use blockchain assets as collateral for lending services.
SALT, which stands for Secured Automated Lending Technology, says it offers risk mitigation software which allows financial entities, like SBM, to participate in this new market.
K.C. Li Kwong Wing, chairman of the SBM Group, says: “This relationship will go a long way toward achieving our nation’s goal of becoming a hub for outstanding blockchain companies and fostering financial inclusion.”
Benjamin Yablon, co-founder of SALT, adds: “The relationship will provide expertise and resources to develop and drive adoption of innovative blockchain business use cases, leveraging SALT’s protocol and asset agnostic distributed ledger based architecture.” (Yablon says he is now based in Mauritius as part of this initiative.)
Like many other nations, Mauritius is looking to become a destination for blockchain start-ups with its sandbox licensing scheme. While this development is early days, SBM and SALT believe via their partnership they can build such an ecosystem on the island nation.
SBM Group is one of the largest banking and financial services institutions listed on the Stock Exchange of Mauritius with a market capitalisation of MUR 23.3 billion ($685.7 million) as at 31 July 2017 and total assets of MUR 177.2 billion ($5.2 billion) as at 30 June 2017.
The group says it offers retail and business solutions, treasury services, international banking facilities, an e-business platform, trade finance, wealth management and investment banking activities. It is present in Mauritius, Madagascar, India and Kenya.