Domestic observers expect the two new blockchain subsidiaries launched by Chinese fintech giant Ant Financial to focus on areas including supply chain financing, cross-border remittances and product tracing.
On 25 February Ant Blockchain Technology (Shanghai) Co., Ltd. (蚂蚁区块链科技（上海）有限公司) and Ant Shuanglian Technology (Shanghai) Co., Ltd. (蚂蚁双链科技（上海）有限公司) unveiled the official signs for their new headquarters in the Huangpu district of Shanghai.
Official information indicates that the two companies were registered on 6 December 2018, with registered capital of 100 million yuan each.
Both companies are 100% owned by Hangzhou Ant Future Technology Co., Ltd. (杭州蚂蚁未来科技有限公司), which is a fully invested subsidiary of Ant Financial whose legal representative is Ant Financial CTO Cheng Li (程立).
The official business scope for Ant Blockchain Technology includes: software development, big data services, computer software and hardware sales, computer information engineering, computer information technology, technical development in the sphere of internet technology; technical consulting, technical services, technical transfers and financial consulting.
The official business scope for Ant Shuanglian Technology includes: data services, financial information services, financial product R&D, design and consulting services, and supply chain management.
Domestic observers point out that these two subsidiaries are likely to focus on supply chain financing, cross-border remittances, e-invoices and commercial product tracing given Ant Financial’s recent statements and efforts in these areas.
Ant Financial said at its recent ATEC Summit that the Chinese term “shuang lian” (double chain) in the name “Ant Shuanglian Technology” was a reference to both the blockchain and supply chain financing.
Ant Financial reportedly plans to provide the technical infrastructure for the rights authentication and transfer of accounts receivables, as well as integrate core cooperating enterprises and their subsidiary financial companies, factoring companies, trust companies and banks into the same platform.
Banks and financial institutions will also have the opportunity to become members of a blockchain league, and use Ant Shuanglian’s platform for online banking, identity verification, and financial and funds settlement operations.
Ant Financial is also seen using these subsidiaries to expand the role of blockchain technology in cross-border remittances.
In June 2018 Ant Financial oversaw the first blockchain-driven cross-border remittance operation between Hong Kong-based AlipayHK and Filipino virtual wallet Gcash, while at the start of the year Ant Financial provide the technical solution plan for cross-border remittances between Pakistan and Malaysia.