BBVA and Porsche – Is DIY Corporate lending on Blockchain the future?

Earlier this month, BBVA announced an acquisition term loan offering on Blockchain, where they lent $170 Million to Porsche.

An acquisition loan is a loan given to a company to purchase a specific asset or to be used for purposes that are laid out before the loan is granted.

– Investopedia

The credit line will allow Porsche to expand their retail distribution channels in Europe and Asia. This is yet another feather in the cap for the BBVA, as they set to establish themselves as a front runner in providing innovative financial services.

In executing this credit line facility, BBVA have managed two firsts – first acquisition term loan ever arranged through blockchain technology, and Porsche Holding is also the first non-Spanish borrower using this technology for the negotiation and closing of a corporate loan

For the BBVA, this is by no means their first stab at something adventurous with Blockchain. Earlier to this, they have offered a syndicate loan on Blockchain for $170 Million to Red Electrica. They also offered a line of credit with Repsol for $367 Million. But this is the first time they have extended it to a non-Spanish borrower.

The press release from the BBVA discusses the benefits of using Blockchain in their Corporate lending process. From automating negotiations and minimizing operational risks, to bringing transparency and immutability to the documentation, the technology adds efficiency to the lending process.

“Our aim is to improve clients’ experience by simplifying processes and enhancing the speed of execution”

Frank Hoefnagels, Head of BBVA CIB in Germany

But BBVA have high ambitions and believe that the technology can help convert corporate lending into a “Do it Yourself” process for their corporate and business clients.

This might yet be another PR stunt, however, if they manage to achieve it, the benefits that framework would add is immense. That can be a blueprint for banks and alternative finance firms to use as a lending operating model for SMEs.

There are firms who have managed to gather a lot of intelligence around lending to SMEs. One of my portfolio firms Funding Xchange is a champion at that. That intelligence acheived through facilitating business loans over the years combined with the process efficiencies and seamlessness that Blockchain could potentially offer would create impact at scale.

It is a year when many crypto dreams have crumbled. But dream we shall, for its the season of hope. And as the New Year dawns, there can be only one way forward – Onwards and Upwards. Happy New Year folks!!

Arunkumar Krishnakumar is a Venture Capital investor at Green Shores Capital focusing on Inclusion and a podcast host.

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