Do Departures at R3 Indicate A Vison Too Distant?

by Tim Sloane 0

Clearly R3 is experiencing turmoil:

“As first reported by Reuters, Santander has become the latest member of the R3 blockchain consortium to abandon the project, its departure coming hard on the heels of that of Goldman Sachs and the revelation that R3 has reduced its fundraising goal by $50 million to $150 million. Reuters also reports that Morgan Stanley and National Australia Bank will no longer be participating.

R3 is playing down the significance of these developments, as reported by Finextra, saying they reflect the natural ‘change over time’ of its diverse membership’s capacities and capabilities.”

R3 is committed to developing a smart contract solution, which is a very high bar relative to technology, contract law, and business semantics. We will need to wait and see if these large banks and investors have the stomach for such a large and difficult vision when relatively narrow solutions, such as bank to bank international remittance, appear ready to deliver large shorter term benefits. It is possible that the departing R3 partners did so to focus on these shorter term efforts.

Only time will tell if the effort to deliver on the bold R3 vision can be sustained over time, especially as new solutions are brought to market that have a quicker impact on the bottom line.

Overview by Tim Sloane, VP Payments Innovation Advisory Service at Mercator Advisory Group

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