Breaking: Swift, Chainlink, and Major Banks Achieve Multi-Blockchain Token Transfer

Swift, the global financial messaging service, announced on August 31, 2023, that it has successfully conducted a series of experiments to facilitate the transfer of tokenized assets across multiple blockchains. Collaborating with major financial institutions and Chainlink ($LINK), a Web3 services platform, Swift aims to solve the interoperability challenges that have been a barrier to the growth of tokenized asset markets.

Major banks involved are: Australia and New Zealand Banking Group Limited (ANZ), BNP Paribas, BNY Mellon, Citi, Clearstream, Euroclear, Lloyds Banking Group, SIX Digital Exchange (SDX), The Depository Trust & Clearing Corporation (DTCC).

Key Findings

Swift’s experiments revealed that its existing infrastructure could serve as a “single point of entry for financial institutions moving tokenized assets while leveraging existing secure infrastructure.” The cooperative’s efforts are part of a broader strategy to maintain secure, global interoperability in a fragmented financial ecosystem.

Tom Zschach, Chief Innovation Officer at Swift, stated, “Interoperability is at the heart of everything we are doing at Swift to facilitate the seamless flow of value across the world […] Our experiments have demonstrated clearly that existing secure and trusted Swift infrastructure can provide that central point of connectivity, removing a huge hurdle in the development of tokenization and unlocking its potential.”

The Challenge of Interoperability

Tokenization is still in its early stages, but 97% of institutional investors believe it will revolutionize asset management. One of the main challenges is the lack of interoperability between different blockchains where tokenized assets are managed. Financial institutions currently have to build connections to each platform individually, leading to “significant operational challenges and cost.”

Technical Insights

Swift collaborated with financial institutions such as ANZ, BNP Paribas, and BNY Mellon, among others. Chainlink was used to securely connect the Swift network to the Ethereum Sepolia network. The experiments involved transfers of simulated tokenized assets between wallets on the same public Distributed Ledger Technology network, between two wallets on different public blockchains, and between a public and private blockchain network.

Future Prospects

Swift will continue to work with the financial community to identify the most compelling use cases for tokenized asset adoption. The most promising avenue, in the near term, appears to be in the secondary trading of non-listed assets and private markets.


The experiments signify a step forward in solving the interoperability problem that has been a bottleneck for the broader adoption of tokenized assets. By providing a single point of entry, Swift could potentially lower operational challenges and costs for financial institutions.


Swift’s experiments mark a significant milestone in the quest for interoperability in the tokenized asset landscape. While the technology is still in its infancy, Swift’s efforts could pave the way for more efficient and cost-effective management of digital assets, thereby accelerating their adoption in mainstream finance.

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French Giant Bank BNP Paribas to Launch Crypto Custody Business

France-based BNP Paribas, the second largest global bank in Europe, has become the latest banking giant to enter the crypto custody business.

BNP Paribas announced on Tuesday that it has partnered with Swiss-based crypto infrastructure firm Metaco to enable the offering of digital assets custody services to its customers. The development was revealed by three people who are familiar with the deal.

What makes the deal significant is BNP Paribas Securities Services, the custodian subsidiary of the bank, which holds over $12 trillion under custody, is the one gearing to focus on offering institutional-grade custody for digital assets.

Expanding Institutional Digital Assets Capabilities

In recent months, Metaco formed partnership deals with several banks to develop digital asset custody platforms.

Last month, on June 30, French bank Societe Generale (GLE) selected Swiss cryptocurrency custody firm Metaco to support its digital asset custody operations. Metaco was tapped to offer digital asset custody for customers in the bank’s digital asset subsidiary, SG FORGE, which will majorly focus on security tokens.

Societe Generale now provides various capital market products to institutional clients under a native security token format on Tezos and Ethereum with whole banking level regulatory and safety compliance.

The partnership enabled SG FORGE to continue integrating security tokens into traditional finance, and leveraging Metaco’s bank-grade digital asset custody and orchestration platform, Harmonize, to further expand its offering at scale.

Also, last month, US multinational investment bank Citi selected Swiss tech firm Metaco to develop and pilot digital asset custody capabilities.

The partnership brought together Metaco’s tech and digital solutions with Citi’s custody network to develop a platform that will enable Citi clients to store and settle digital assets securely.

Citi plans to fully integrate Metaco’s bank-grade digital asset custody and orchestration platform, Harmonize, into its existing infrastructure.

The service that Metaco is offering to Citi and Societe Generale works to bridge digital and traditional assets.

With Metaco’s service, SocGen and Citi are leveraging their infrastructure to support their vision of bridging traditional and digital finance, focused on security tokens, like tokenized versions of stocks or other financial instruments, with less of an emphasis on pure cryptocurrencies.

In the past, the likes of Spanish major bank BBVA, London-based Zodia Custody, Singapore multinational bank DBS, and UnionBank Philippines also partnered with Metaco to enable digital assets custody services to their clients. 

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French central bank pilots blockchain-based CBDC for debt market

The central bank of France continues actively exploring a central bank digital currency (CBDC), completing a significant trial of a blockchain-based CBDC in the country’s debt market.

Over 500 institutions in France have participated in a 10-month experiment testing a CBDC issued by Banque de France for government bond deals, the Financial Times reported on Tuesday.

The CBDC trial was led by Belgium-based financial services firm Euroclear and used a system developed by American technology giant IBM. The CBDC test also involved the French public debt office alongside the central bank and a consortium of major financial companies operating in France, including firms such as BNP Paribas, Credit Agricole CIB, HSBC and Societe Generale.

As part of the trial, the participants traded government bonds and security tokens, settling them using a CBDC supplied by the central bank. The project tested use cases of a CBDC in a range of everyday activities, such as issuing new bonds, using them in repurchase agreements, as well as paying coupons and redeeming deals.

“We have together successfully been able to measure the inherent benefits of this technology, concluding that the central bank digital currencies can settle central bank money safely and securely,” Euroclear executive Isabelle Delorme said.

According to Soren Mortensen, global director of financial markets at IBM, the project “went well beyond previous blockchain initiatives” because it successfully trialed “most central securities depository and central bank processes” while cutting off existing interim steps such as reconciliation between market intermediaries.

Related: G7 leaders issue central bank digital currency guidelines

After launching an experimental CBDC program in March 2020, the central bank of France has been consistently testing various CBDC use cases. In June, Banque de France tested a CBDC to simulate the settlement and delivery of listed securities in collaboration with Swiss cryptocurrency bank SEBA. Previously, the central bank piloted a CBDC to issue $2.4 million worth of simulated shares using a private blockchain platform.