Axiata, PLDT, Telin, Turkcell, Viettel and Zain
join the Carrier Blockchain Study Group (CBSG)
July 6, 2018
California and Tokyo, July 6, 2018 — The Carrier Blockchain Study Group (“CBSG”), the global blockchain consortium of telecom carriers, today announced that ASEAN and South Asian operator Axiata Group Berhad (“Axiata”), Philippine-based PLDT, Inc. (“PLDT”), Indonesia-based PT. Telekomunikasi Indonesia International (“Telin”), Turkey-based leading digital operator Turkcell (“Turkcell”), Vietnam-based Viettel Telecom Corporation (“Viettel”), and Kuwait-headquartered Zain Group (“Zain”) agreed to jointly explore how to collaborate on building a next-generation global cross-carrier blockchain platform and ecosystem.
The CBSG Consortium is the leading telecom blockchain consortium. It was launched in September 2017 to enable the joint development of an innovative blockchain platform designed specifically for telecom carriers, led by U.S.-based blockchain technology company TBCASoft, Inc. (“TBCASoft”) and Japan-based SoftBank Corp. (“SoftBank”), with U.S.-based Sprint Corporation (“Sprint”) and Taiwan-based Far EasTone Telecommunications Co., Ltd. (“Far EasTone”) as initial founding members. Other members of the CBSG Consortium are South Korea-based LG Uplus Corp. (“LG U+”), KT Corporation (“KT”), and UAE-based Etisalat Telecommunication Corporation (“Etisalat”). CBSG aims to provide telecom members and their customers various services such as secured global digital payments, clearing and settlement, personal authentication, IoT applications and other services using blockchain technology.
The Consortium is also announcing the creation of an additional blockchain working group that will focus on global remittance services. Blockchain technology is well suited for these types of transactions; streamlining processes to better serve consumers. The blockchain platform and solutions proposed by the CBSG Consortium are specifically designed for telecom carriers and will help them create and extend their services beyond traditional markets and borders.
Dominic P. Arena, Group Chief Strategy and Marketing Officer, Axiata Group, said, “As we transform into a New Generation Digital Champion, Blockchain has been identified as a digital platform opportunity which, by design, is extremely well suited to the global telecom operator ecosystem of trusted, connected and distributed parties. We look forward to working with our operator peers to develop the world's most secure and fit-for-purpose Blockchain-as-a-Service (BaaS) infrastructure, upon which we will build the next generation of digital services for our Consumer and Enterprise & Government customers.”
PLDT FVP and Head of International and Carrier Business and PLDT Global Corp. President Katrina Luna-Abelarde said, “The inter-carrier blockchain technology will definitely bring enormous benefits to PLDT's overseas customers whom we have been serving for over 15 years. With the transformation of their lifestyles in the digital era, they require the streamlined solutions proposed by the CBSG Consortium, such as global remittance services, among others. We seek to empower our global customers with CBSG's new platforms and solutions.”
Faizal Rochmad Djoemadi, CEO of Telin said, “The core attributes of blockchains, which is shared ledger, can ensure trust and safe transactions between all participants which potentially can generate new services especially in the digital asset transactions area, mobile transactions and international remittance. We believe deploying blockchain as a service in Telin's extensive global infrastructure will enable our customer's digital business and solution. For Telin, joining the CBSG Consortium will provide a platform to collaborate among global carriers to explore and quickly deploy the service globally.”
Kaan Terzioglu, CEO of Turkcell said, “By transporting valuable digital assets over mobile networks in a secure and transparent framework, blockchains can speed the growth of the digital economy and help us to deliver new services for our customers. We must look beyond simply extending the connectivity of existing telecom infrastructure. As mobile carriers, we are well positioned to offer a ‘blockchain-as-a-service’ ecosystem and we must use this advantage. Therefore, we are looking forward to sharing our experiences with CBSG to discover together the possibilities to monetize on this next generation global cross-carrier blockchain platform. Being a part of this leading telecom blockchain consortium will help us to enhance our services and improve customer experience on our digital platforms.”
“Blockchain is an emerging technology that is changing the way of doing business in every industry. With CBSG global cross-carrier blockchain platform and ecosystem, we are looking forward to not only bring various services such as top-up, roaming wallet, secured clearing and settlement, personal authentication, IoT applications, etc… for our customers but also enhancing their experience in the digital era” said Mr. Doan Dai Phong, Director of Viettel International Business.
Scott Gegenheimer, Zain Group CEO-Operations said, “Blockchain is an important evolving technology, and collaboration is necessary in order to harness the applications and use cases it delivers. As Zain transforms into a digital lifestyle operator, it is important for us to be in the company of other progressive network operators within the Carrier Blockchain Study Group, and together I believe our work can achieve truly remarkable results leveraging blockchain technology across markets and applications.”
Daichi Nozaki, Vice President, Head of Global Business Division, Enterprise Business Unit of SoftBank said, “I am happy to see that other great carriers recognize the significant opportunity in a blockchain platform specifically designed for them — and the inherent advantage a consortium blockchain has over private and public blockchains. SoftBank is continuously building innovative services for its customers who have lives that extend beyond geographic borders. Being able to leverage the new CBSG cross-carrier working groups opens up exciting possibilities to extend our services to match their lives.”
Ling Wu, Founder and CEO of TBCASoft said, “The CBSG Consortium has been growing very fast since it was founded in September 2017. We have accomplished a lot in inter-carrier blockchain business innovation with existing CBSG members. TBCASoft is the leading cross-carrier blockchain platform and solution provider. We welcome new CBSG members and are looking forward to creating more blockchain-based business together with all members.” Ling Wu is also the Co-Chairman of The CBSG Consortium.
Axiata is one of the leading telecommunications groups in Asia with approximately 350 million customers and with a presence in 13 countries. In pursuit of its vision to be the New Generation Digital Champion by 2021, the Group has transformed itself from a holding entity with a portfolio of pure-play mobile assets into a Triple Core Strategy driven business with the focus on Digital Telco, Digital Businesses and Infrastructure. Within ASEAN and South Asia, Axiata has controlling stakes in market-leading mobile and fixed operators in the cusp of becoming Digital Telcos through digitization and convergence. ‘edotco’, the Group's infrastructure company, presently the 12th largest independent tower company globally, operates in six countries to deliver telecommunications infrastructure services amassing approximately 27,500 towers. Axiata Digital and Axiata Business Services are the digital businesses arms of the Group. Together, these businesses are focused on capturing the rapid growth in digital financial services (‘Boost’), digital advertising (‘ada’), enterprise solutions/IoT (‘Xpand’) and platform services (‘APIgate’) with user access to global markets.
PLDT is the leading telecommunications and digital services provider in the Philippines. Through its principal business segments — fixed line, wireless, digital and others — PLDT offers the most diversified range of communications and digital services across the Philippines' most extensive fiber optic, wireless and fixed line networks. It is listed on the Philippine Stock Exchange (PSE:TEL) and its American Depositary Shares are listed on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE:PHI). In 2017, PLDT was one of the largest Philippine-listed companies in terms of market capitalization.
PT. Telekomunikasi Indonesia International (Telin) is a subsidiary of PT Telekomunikasi Indonesia, Tbk (Telkom), a state-owned telecommunication and network service provider. Telin focuses on international telecommunication business and serves as Telkom's business arm in managing and developing its business lines abroad. With its vision of “Global Digital Hub”, Telin owns subsidiaries in Singapore, Hong Kong, Timor Leste via its Telkomcel brand, Australia, Malaysia, USA, global offices in Myanmar, Macau, and Taiwan as well as a project in Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. The company also has 71 Points of Presence (PoP) located globally. Through Telkom Group strategy together with reliable networks and infrastructures, Telin is able to provide high quality services that reach all parts of the world in order to Enabling Your Global Digital Business and Solution.
Turkcell is a digital operator headquartered in Turkey, serving its customers with its unique portfolio of digital services along with voice, messaging, data and IPTV services on its mobile and fixed networks. Turkcell Group companies operate in 8 countries – Turkey, Ukraine, Belarus, Northern Cyprus, Germany, Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan, Moldova. Turkcell launched LTE services in its home country on April 1, 2016, employing LTE-Advanced and 3 carrier aggregation technologies in 81 cities. In 2G and 3G, Turkcell's population coverage in Turkey is at 99.63% and 97.84%, respectively, as of March, 2018. Turkcell offers up to 10 Gbps fiber internet speed with its FTTH services. Turkcell Group reported TRY4.8 billion revenue in Q1 FY18 with total assets of TRY37.1 billion as of March 31, 2018. It has been listed on the NYSE and the BIST since July 2000, and is the only NYSE-listed company in Turkey.
Viettel Telecom Corporation is a branch of Viettel Group which is currently the largest telecommunications group in Vietnam and one of the Top 30 largest telecom companies in the world (GSMA). It consists of more than 20 subsidiary companies running different types of business including Telecommunications, Information Technology, High-tech Research & Development. Viettel has a significant presence in 11 countries and with more than 100 million subscribers worldwide in Asia, Africa and America. The company has considerable experience with universalizing telecommunications in many developing countries. Viettel also knows that connecting people is not only about making phone calls or exchanging text messages but also to enjoy life, be creative and prosper. That's why Viettel always makes efforts with the most creative approach to connect people no matter when, where or who they are.
About Zain Group
Zain is a leading telecommunications operator across the Middle East and Africa providing mobile voice and data services to 46.9 million active customers as of March 31, 2018. With a commercial presence in 8 countries, Zain operates in: Kuwait, Bahrain, Iraq, Jordan, Saudi Arabia, Sudan and South Sudan. In Lebanon, the Group manages ‘touch’ on behalf of the government. In Morocco, Zain has a 15.5% stake in ‘INWI’, through a joint venture. Zain is listed on the Kuwait Stock Exchange (stock ticker: ZAIN). For more please email: or visit: www.zain.com.
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