The World Bank is getting in on blockchain

The international lender is planning to issue what it says is the world’s first global blockchainbond, a notable mainstream endorsement of the emerging technology.

Blockchain is best known as the technology underpinning bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies. It serves as a digital record of financial transactions.

The World Bank has hired Commonwealth Bank of Australia (CBAUF) to manage the bond, which is expected to raise as much as 100 million Australian dollars ($73 million).

They have named it the “Blockchain Offered New Debt Instrument,” or “bond-i,” a nod to Sydney’s famous Bondi Beach.

The World Bank follows German automaker Daimler, which used blockchain technology to issue a type of German bond in a pilot project last year.

Blockchain could hugely streamline the process of issuing bonds, which has been heavily reliant on physical paperwork for the past 200 years, according to James Wall, a senior institutional banking executive at Commonwealth Bank.

Moving the process to the blockchain could cut costs and speed up trading for both bond issuers and investors.

“The potential of this is that it could be a revolution for the capital markets,” Wall told CNN on Friday. The bank has been experimenting with the technology for the past few years.

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