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Treasury & Capital Markets
Digitalization ushers in a new era for trade finance
Digitalization is changing the way corporates are documenting and funding trade in Asia and the rest of the world
Darryl Yu 13 Aug 2015

Digitalization is changing the way corporates are documenting and funding trade in Asia and the rest of the world.


Just this week, Brazil's Alvean Sugar and Canada's Lantic Inc have successfully completed a shipment using cloud-based messaging over Bolero's platform - an industry first involving the trade of sugar. Digitalization of documents that support trade is increasingly being used in commodity transactions.


Last year, the first electronic back-to-back letter of credit was undertaken for a copper concentrate shipment from Chile to China using the Bolero cloud-based platform.


Bolero runs a platform that handles electronic trade finance documentation and automatic settlement.


"This highlights the important role Bolero's digital trade finance solutions are playing in transforming the way organizations trade globally," says Gary Cutress, sales director of Bolero.


The trade between Alvean and Lantic is the latest milestone for the firm following massive upgrades to its technology infrastructure. Just a few months ago, Bolero teamed up with web-hosting firm CSC in extending its enterprise cloud services. The company also announced firm support for the Swift MT798 corporate-to-bank messaging.


Alvean trade execution leader Jeremy Reynolds cites the ease and speed involved in digitalized documentation of trade.


"The electronic bill of lading was issued to Alvean before being transferred to Lantic Inc. That confirmed the receipt within just one hour of submission," he notes.


"Throughout the process, we have been very impressed with the speed and ease with which the transaction was carried out."


Aside from Bolero's cloud-based technology, bank payment obligations (BPOs) have also emerged as another technological solution to often paper-heavy trade process.


Under a BPO, trade documents are not only digitalized but also matched via Swift's trade services utility. Any discrepancy in the trade details can easily and effectively be flagged by the participating banks.


These exciting developments are part of an ongoing trend in the trade industry to digitalize finance globally. With rising pressure on corporates to cut costs and become more efficient, it would only make sense for corporates to seek electronic solutions.




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