Dimon says JPMorgan Chase will use blockchain for multiple applications

August 06, 2018
Chris Wheal

Jamie Dimon, the chief executive of investment bank JPMorgan Chase, offered a tantalizing glimpse of the company’s plans for blockchain, saying that it would be used widely in its business.

JPMorgan Chase chief executive Jamie Dimon says company will use blockchain for ‘a whole lot of things’

In an interview in the Harvard Business Review, the outspoken critic of cryptocurrencies made only brief comments on the topic of blockchain and wasn’t pressed on any details but Dimon said it would be used “for a whole lot of things”.

No more to say on cryptos

Dimon has in the past labelled bitcoin “a fraud” and a “waste of time”, adding that if any of the company’s bankers engaged in cryptocurrency trade, he’d “fire them in a second”.

He was much more reticent in this interview and said: “I probably shouldn’t say any more about cryptocurrency. But it’s not the same as gold or fiat currencies. Those are supported by law, police, courts. They’re not replicable, and there are strictures on them.”

‘Blockchain is real’

On blockchain, however, he added: “Blockchain, on the other hand, is real. We’re testing it and will use it for a whole lot of things.”

Several of JPMorgan Chase’s rivals have been testing use cases for the distributed ledger technology that underpins cryptocurrency transactions – among them have been trade finance and supply chain tests.

HSBC has been a leader in this sphere, partnering several European banks – including Santander and Deutsche Bank – in the we.trade trade finance consortium, which last month completed a number of cross-border trades using a blockchain platform.

Payments systems

Others continue to experiment with payments systems using the technology. Indeed, in his interview with the Harvard Business Review, Dimon said he considered new forms of payment as the company’s biggest competitive threat.

He said: “You have PayPal, Venmo, Alipay, and more. These companies are doing a good job of embedding basic banking services in their chats, their social, their shopping experience.”

Post written by Chris Wheal
Chris Wheal is editor of OpenLedger's news and features service. An award-wining business journalists himself, he runs a team of freelance journalists from across the UK and north America.

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