Mastercard and enterprise blockchain software company R3 announced on Wednesday (September 11) that they have entered into a strategic partnership to build a new blockchain-powered cross-border payments solution.

In case you have not heard about R3, here’s a brief history of the company: 

  • R3 was founded in September 2015.
  • In April 2016, R3 introduced Corda, a blockchain platform designed to “to solve real business problems in both complex and highly-regulated markets.” 
  • In November 2016, the free and fully open source version of Corda was launched.
  • Corda Enterprise, “a commercial version which offers features and services fine-tuned for modern-day businesses,” was launched in July 2018.
  • By December 2018, the Corda ecosystem had grown to over “300 of the world’s leading financial services firms, technology companies, central banks, regulators and trade associations.”

In the press release shared with CryptoGlobe, the two companies say that the purpose of this partnership is to “develop and pilot a new blockchain-enabled cross-border payments solution that will initially focus on connecting global faster payments infrastructures, schemes and banks supported by a clearing and settlement network operated by Mastercard.”

The idea is to combine R3’s blockchain technology know-how with Mastercard’s “existing payment systems assets, brand and distribution,” with the aim of  dealing with issues such as “high processing overheads, liquidity management and the existing lack of standardization and processes between banks and domestic clearing systems.”

Peter Klein, the Executive Vice President of Global Strategy and Solutions (New Payments Platforms) at Mastercard, had this to say:

Developing a new and better cross-border B2B payments solution by improving worldwide connectivity in the account-to-account space is central to Mastercard’s ambition. Our goal is to deliver global payment infrastructure choice and connectivity as demonstrated through our recent strategic acquisitions and partnerships, including our relationship with R3. It confirms our commitment to innovation, both home-grown and through partnerships and acquisitions, to support advances and innovation in the increasingly complex global payment infrastructure space.

And David E. Rutter, the CEO of R3, stated: 

We are excited to partner with Mastercard to help shape the future of the digital payments ecosystem. All institutions – large or small – rely on the ability to send and receive payments, but all too often the technology they rely upon is cumbersome and expensive. Cross-border payments can be a particular pain point. Corda was designed specifically for enterprise use cases such as this, and we look forward supporting Mastercard in bringing blockchain-enabled payments businesses across the globe.


Featured Image Credit: Photo via