Visa Europe has announced it is working on a proof-of-concept for a blockchain-based remittance service.
Created through Visa Europe Collab, the trade organization’s innovation initiative, the proof-of-concept is being built in collaboration with Epiphyte, an enterprise blockchain services firm that recently graduated from San Mateo incubator Boost VC.
Though details on the proof-of-concept were limited, the companies said they are working in a "controlled test environment" that is seeking to simulate real-world remittance transactions.
A press release by Visa Europe Collab indicated the company initiated the project as it believes blockchain technology could have valuable applications in the payment services industry, solving traditional industry pain points as it matures.
Visa Europe Collab innovation partner Jon Downing said in a statement:
"There is a real opportunity to develop an improved remittance service for both the sender and receiver of payments in terms of fees, speed and ease of use."
The news comes amid continued assertions by executives in the traditional remittance industry, such as MoneyGram and Western Union, that digital currencies and blockchain-based systems will not be able to solve problems in the sector.
A membership association that oversees Visa-branded products in European market, Visa Europe was recently purchased by Visa for as much as $23.4bn in cash and stock. Previously, Visa Europe had operated as a separate publicly traded entity.
The proof-of-concept announcement showcases the common ground at the now-united entities, as it follows Visa’s debut of a blockchain-based car leasing concept at the Money20/20 trade show in Las Vegas and its participation in Chain’s $30m Series A funding round, finalized this September.
The Visa Europe proof-of-concept is expected to be completed within two months, according to the company.