CLS makes R3 blockchain investment

FX settlement firm CLS has invested $5 million in blockchain consortium R3.

Foreign exchange (FX) settlement and market infrastructure specialist CLS has made a $5 million strategic investment in blockchain software consortium, R3.

CLS will work alongside R3 to further develop its blockchain-powered platform, Corda, to improve efficiencies for its members, including 70 financial institutions and more than 24,000 third party clients.

“We are proud to be one of the first market infrastructure providers to form part of the pioneering R3 ecosystem,” said Alan Marquard, chief strategy & development officer at CLS.

“We look forward to working in collaboration with other members to explore how CLS can provide transformative blockchain-based solutions that deliver efficiencies and risk mitigation for a diverse range of market participants operating in the global FX market.”

Founded in 2015, R3 has a network of more than 200 firms, regulators, trade bodies and technology companies working on the Corda platform, which records, manages and executes agreements using blockchain technology.

Last year, R3 raised $107 million in a funding round from 40 major institutions including Barclays, Bank of America Merrill Lynch, HSBC, BNY Mellon, Citi, BNP Paribas and Deutsche Bank. However, several founding members of the consortium, including JP Morgan, Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley have withdrawn from the group.

“CLS is critically important to the functioning of one of the most important markets in the world,” added David E. Rutter, CEO of R3. “It is absolutely right that major infrastructure players like this look to technologies such as blockchain to continue making their products and services faster, easier, safer and more cost-effective for the end user.”