Another breakthrough in foreign trade with blockchain technology from İşbank

İşbank has become the first Turkish bank to offer payment guarantee in foreign trade using blockchain technology. The transaction, to which Şişecam, Kuraray Europe GMBH, İşbank and Commerzbank were parties, was carried out over the Marco Polo platform on May 10, 2021. İşbank tested the blockchain technology through the two transactions conducted in the pilot environment in May and November of the last year. This last transaction has become the first live foreign trade transaction conducted through the blockchain technology in Turkey. This transaction between Germany and Turkey was also the first transaction conducted in the payment guarantee module of the international "Marco Polo" platform.

Under the transaction, the order of import planned by Şişecam from Kuraray GMBH operating in Germany was created as a smart contract on the Marco Polo platform. Upon the approval of the smart contract by the parties, İşbank provided a financial guarantee for the transaction by granting a commitment to pay on maturity, and the import process was initiated in a much shorter time than the conventional method.

Delivering a statement regarding the transaction, İşbank Deputy Chief Executive Şahismail Şimşek emphasized that the blockchain technology and smart contracts eliminated the operational workload in conventional business models, constituting an alternative offering transparency, speed and trust for the parties. Pointing out that the need for the acceleration, transparency and digitalization of foreign trade transactions gained even more importance in the pandemic where document sending and control processes were getting more difficult in international trade, Şimşek said: “Following the two pilot transactions we carried out in 2020, we have now successfully completed a live foreign trade transaction by using the blockchain technology. The use of payment methods based on physical documents is decreasing and the need for data matching and banking services based on electronic commerce is increasing. In line with our approach of providing innovative and value-added solutions to our clients in every field, we give a special emphasis to the blockchain technology within our digitalization efforts. Thus, we generate solutions to introduce new financial products to our clients in addition to conventional solutions in a rapidly-changing foreign trade environment."

Stating that they were excited to conduct the first-ever live foreign trade transaction over the block chain-based financing platform of Marco Polo, Görkem Elverici, CFO of Şişecam, commented: "By using the state-of-the-art and most effective digital solutions in all operations of our company within the country and abroad, we will continue to play an active role in ensuring the development of the entire ecosystem together with both our clients and suppliers."

Cyril Broutin, Marco Polo’s Head of Business Development & Account Mgt. in Turkey indicated: “The Payment Commitment-Live Transaction involving Şişecam, Kuraray, İşbank and Commerzbank proves that Trade Finance transactions on Distributed Ledger Technology (D.L.T) with a distributed trade platform and with fully automated data exchange are a reality. We are immensely proud to have İşbank as a partner bank and Şişecam as the first Turkish corporate client on the Marco Polo Network and are grateful for their vision and commitment to digital trade. We are looking forward to expand the digital activities with İşbank and Şişecam and other Turkish Corporate clients.”

İşbank conducted the first pilot foreign trade financing transaction with blockchain technology on May 27, 2020 and became the first Turkish bank to offer payment guarantee using this technology. The bank conducted its second pilot operation in November 2020 with Sanko Holding, Super Film, Brückner Group, and Commerzbank, again over the Marco Polo platform.


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