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Signature launches institutional payments using permissioned ethereum blockchain

Wednesday 5 December 2018 | 02:05 PM CET

Commercial bank Signature Bank is launching a new payments platform for institutional clients powered by a permissioned version of the ethereum blockchain.

Developed in partnership with trueDigital Holdings, the Signet Platform lets Signature Bank clients move money in 30 seconds, 24-hours a day, seven days a week by converting US dollars into tokens compliant with ethereum’s ERC-20 standard.

While this early implementation of blockchain is limited in that only Signature customers can use the always-on service, it is also part of a larger plan that could eventually see the bank directly connecting to others without the need of an intermediary.

Unlike other ethereum tokens that comply with ethereum’s ERC-20 standard, Signature Bank’s digitized dollars, or signets, are designed to only work on the bank's proprietary Signet Platform, and are not expected to interoperate with other exchanges and services built to accommodate the standard.

The Signet Platform will open to commercial clients of Signature Bank on January 1, 2019. At the time of launch the transactions will be free, but they also require a minimum balance of USD 250,000.

Deposits held within the Signet Platform are eligible for FDIC insurance, up to the legal insurable amounts defined by the FDIC. Because the platform is restricted to Signature Bank clients, all users must pass the bank’s anti-money-laundering and know-your-customer compliance.

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