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AliBaba’s AntChain Launches as Company Prepares $200 bln-Worth Dual Listing

China’s edge in the blockchain space has seen a boost with AliBaba’s Ant Group launch of AntChain as a new technology brand for the company’s blockchain-based solutions on Thursday July 23. Formerly known as Ant Blockchain, the platform founded in 2016 has since covered over 40 fields including commodity traceability, cross-border remittance, supply chain finance, e-invoice, etc – Shanghai-based Cosco Shipping Company trialed AntChain earlier this month to simplify its operations.

Coming after the company had barely announced it has started the process of a simultaneous initial public offering (IPO) on the Shanghai Stock Exchange’s Star board and The Stock Exchange of Hong Kong Limited, AntChain is set to build on blockchain’s potential to redefine trust in the digital age as it solves real-life problems for users. It will also combine other digital technologies including Artificial Intelligence, Internet of Things (IoT) and secure computation using an AntChain Workstation that is set to reduce set-up time by 90% as against the usual i.e. enables enterprise clients deploy on AntChain in under an hour and increase transaction speed by 30%.

Ant Group is the fintech arm of Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba Group that branched out in 2011. It‘s the world’s most valuable tech unicorn as well as the first company to list both in Hong Kong and on the Star Market. The dual listing is meant to help the company “accelerate its goal of digitizing the service industry in China and driving domestic demand, as well as position the company to develop global markets with partners and expand investment in technology and innovation,” Ant says about the listing which has been tipped to be one of the biggest IPOs of 2020.

Ant Group, which got the regulatory approval to change its legal name in Chinese to Ant Technology Group Co. in May, is reportedly seeking a valuation of $200 bln as it goes public in Hong Kong and Shanghai as China’s leader in internet finance.  It runs the Alipay mobile payment platform which holds the most blockchain patents worldwide with 212 patents as of May 2020. A combination of the parent company’s recent blockchain-related moves says a lot about its approach to the emerging technology and the complementary role such would play in China’s quest to dominate the space.

AntChain has topped the global ranking for blockchain patent applications for the last three consecutive years. According to the company, AntChain can process and support a billion user accounts, a billion transactions every day, 100,000 cross-chain editing capacities per second and currently has over 100 million digital assets uploaded daily. AntChain looks to contribute to improving the transformation of the blockchain-enabled industry and to work with “partners to make blockchain technology more accessible for users” according to Vice President of Ant Group, Geoff Jiang. The opening up of China’s Blockchain Service Network (BSN) globally by August 10 is meant to serve a similar purpose.

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