A subsidiary of Saudi Telecom Company (stc) is the first telecommunications firm in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region to start working with crypto infrastructure firm Chainlink.
Blockchain and crypto-friendly stc Bahrain will launch a Chainlink node, providing smart contracts with access to real-world data and secure off-chain computations, the companies said on Monday.
In recent months, Chainlink, the undisputed heavyweight when it comes to providing blockchain-based smart contracts with external data, has partnered with an array of real-world data and infrastructure providers, including price feeds for decentralized finance (DeFi), weather data and trusted election results.
Bahrain’s central bank has been forward-thinking in its creation of a regulatory framework, making it an important hub in the region. For its part, stc Bahrain has introduced financial services and insurance and is venturing into content aggregation and gaming, not to mention kicking the tires of blockchain, according to Saad Odeh, stc Bahrain’s chief wholesale officer.
“We are a small, agile team and a very small country,” said Odeh in an interview with CoinDesk. “So, normally if the main group wants to try something new out, they try it here in Bahrain, and then we roll it back to the rest of the group and its affiliates.”
Odeh predicts stc Bahrain’s oracle and data support will run to financial markets information, and in the future could include things like data relating to consumer behavior and applications around health care.
“We are starting with Ethereum and will definitely be looking to introduce blockchain topologies and applications in Bahrain,” Odeh said. “We are lucky to have a very friendly regulatory framework, whether it’s from a financial perspective or from a telecoms perspective.”
The leader in news and information on cryptocurrency, digital assets and the future of money, CoinDesk is a media outlet that strives for the highest journalistic standards and abides by a strict set of editorial policies. CoinDesk is an independent operating subsidiary of Digital Currency Group, which invests in cryptocurrencies and blockchain startups. As part of their compensation, certain CoinDesk employees, including editorial employees, may receive exposure to DCG equity in the form of stock appreciation rights, which vest over a multi-year period. CoinDesk journalists are not allowed to purchase stock outright in DCG.