Blockchain startup R3CEV has added Hong Kong-based life insurance group AIA to the ranks of its global banking consortium.

The announcement comes at a time when R3 is increasing its presence in Asia as well as diversifying its portfolio of participating financial institutions, having added China-based Ping An Insurance Group to its consortium in late May.

In statements, R3 CEO David Rutter echoed this sentiment in remarks, seeking to position the move as one that adds new stakeholders to its conversation. In addition to creating in-house technologies, such as the smart contract distributed ledger Corda, R3 provides consultancy and research services.

Such resources were key to striking the deal with AIA, according to its chief operations officer Simeon Preston, who said:

“R3 provides us the possibility to understand together with other leading global organisations in financial services the potential applications of blockchain technology around the world and particularly in the Asia-Pacific region.”

The move by China and Hong Kong-based financial institutions further coincides with what appears to be growing interest among similar businesses across Asia. Japan, for instance, has seen a number of its bitcoin and blockchain startups raise funding in recent weeks, while its banks have been active in announcing proofs-of-concept.

Image credit: Isaac Mok /

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