Citi Treasury and Trade Solutions (TTS) has introduced Citi Token Services, a digital asset service designed to revolutionise cash management and trade finance for institutional clients.
This innovative offering, announced on Monday, September 18, harnesses blockchain and smart contract technologies, to bring forth a new era of seamless digital asset solutions within Citi’s global network.
Citi Token Services is set to redefine the way institutional clients interact with financial services, delivering ‘always-on’ programmable solutions, including cross-border payments, liquidity management, and automated trade finance options, operating 24/7.
Shahmir Khaliq, global head of services at Citi, who expressed enthusiasm for this development, said: “Digital asset technologies have the potential to transform the regulated financial system by infusing it with new technologies and leveraging existing legal instruments and regulatory frameworks. The creation of Citi Token Services is a pivotal step in our mission to offer real-time, next-generation transaction banking services to our institutional clients. This development is closely aligned with our industry-leading work on the Regulated Liability Network, aimed at fostering interoperable digital asset solutions across multiple banks.”
One highlight of Citi Token Services is its collaboration with global shipping giant Maersk and a canal authority to digitise a solution equivalent to bank guarantees and letters of credit in the trade finance sector. The pilot project demonstrated the seamless transfer of tokenised deposits, facilitating instant payments to service providers through smart contracts.
Marie-Laure Martin, regional treasury manager for the Americas at Maersk, who lauded the partnership, said: “We are thrilled to have joined forces with Citi for the successful test pilots involving digitised tokens and smart contracts, offering innovative solutions with promising applications in the realm of trade finance.”
This groundbreaking technology streamlined the entire transaction process, providing buyers and sellers with instant payment capabilities, thereby potentially reducing transaction processing times from days to mere minutes.
Citi Token Services has also been successfully integrated into a global cash management pilot, enabling clients to seamlessly transfer liquidity between Citi branches around the world, unrestricted by time zones, and available 24/7.
Ryan Rugg, global head of digital assets at Citi Treasury and Trade Solutions, who emphasised the significance of this offering, said: “Citi Token Services equips corporate treasurers with a powerful tool for managing global liquidity on a just-in-time, programmable basis. This advancement will alleviate friction related to cut-off times and service window limitations. Our solutions, working within the Citi network, are reinforced by collaborative industry efforts, such as the Regulated Liability Network.”
“We are excited about the potential of shared ledger technology to enhance Citi’s services and the broader financial system, through partnerships with regulators and industry peers,” she continued.
In a news release on Citibank’s website, the company confirmed that the blockchain technology underpinning Citi Token Services is owned and managed by Citi itself and clients will not be required to host a blockchain node to access these services, making it even more accessible and user-friendly.