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Mastercard announced on Wednesday it is teaming up with enterprise blockchain software provider R3 to develop and pilot a new blockchain-enabled cross-border payment solution. According to Mastercard, the solution will initially focus on connecting global faster payments infrastructures, as well as schemes and banks supported by a clearing and settlement network that is operated by Mastercard.

Mastercard also revealed that the partnership is the latest step in its multi-rail strategy, providing customers with an “unrivalled” choice in how they move money.

“By combining R3’s expertise in blockchain with Mastercard’s existing payment systems assets, brand and distribution, the partnership will provide increasingly innovative, value add services for customers, addressing factors such as high processing overheads, liquidity management and the existing lack of standardization and processes between banks and domestic clearing systems.”

Speaking about the collaboration, Peter Klein, Executive Vice President of New Payment Platforms for Mastercard, stated:

 “Developing a new and better cross-border B2B payments solution by improving worldwide connectivity in the account-to-account space is central to Mastercard’s ambition. Our goal is to deliver global payment infrastructure choice and connectivity as demonstrated through our recent strategic acquisitions and partnerships, including our relationship with R3. It confirms our commitment to innovation, both home-grown and through partnerships and acquisitions, to support advances and innovation in the increasingly complex global payment infrastructure space.”

David E. Rutter, CEO of R3, added:

“We are excited to partner with Mastercard to help shape the future of the digital payments ecosystem. All institutions – large or small – rely on the ability to send and receive payments, but all too often the technology they rely upon is cumbersome and expensive. Cross-border payments can be a particular pain point. Corda was designed specifically for enterprise use cases such as this, and we look forward supporting Mastercard in bringing blockchain-enabled payments businesses across the globe.”

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