When a company describes its product with these epithets: 'has solved the greatest challenge in fintech', 'hugely flexible', or personal favourite '100% future-proof', you can’t help but consider it complete and utter bull.
But, when that company is ThoughMachine, led by ex-Google engineer Paul Taylor, eyebrows simply raise themselves.
The software this company created is called Vault OS, and the ‘greatest challenge in fintech’ it is reffering to – is banking. The company, 50 strong and based in London, has been working in secrecy for two years, creating a new operating system for banks, promising to rid us of many frustrations we currently face.
Vault OS’s core function is to maintain a large ledger. It will run a private blockchain and cryptographic ledger, which will be hosted by ThoughtMachine. That’s the first, and probably crucial, problem, or should I say, ‘controversy’. That basically means banks would permanently outsource some of their key operations, and it’s a big question if they’d actually agree to do this.
Ask pretty much anyone in the industry, and you’ll get an optimistic response – blockchain just might be worth it. The technology is secure, scalable, agile and generally considered an awesome replacement for the systems currently in place. Perhaps the two biggest advantages are the possibility of real-time transactions, as well as the fact that there’s an API.
“Vault OS provides banks with relief from the challenges of compliance because its treasury and risk functions provide accurate and up-to-date reporting. Every transaction is reported in real time and so within seconds of, say, a customer swiping a credit card, the effect appears on its balance sheet,” the company says.
“This means bank officials can determine its exact financial position at any moment. These tools are in the core of Vault OS, making implementation of capital-adequacy standards such as Basel III automatic.”
Looks promising. I, for one, am holding my breath.