APT, du And MTN Group Join CBSG; Far EasTone And SoftBank Complete Retail Purchases Enabled By TBCASoft Cross-Carrier Blockchain Platform

February 22, 2019

Barcelona and California, February 22, 2019 – The Carrier Blockchain Study Group (“CBSG”), the global blockchain consortium of telecom carriers, today announced that Taiwan-based Asia Pacific Telecom Co., Ltd. (“APT”), U.A.E.-based du, from Emirates Integrated Telecommunications Company (“EITC”) and South Africa-based MTN Group (“MTN”), have joined the consortium to collaborate on building a next-generation global cross-carrier blockchain platform and ecosystem.  This increases the number of trailblazing carriers in the consortium to 15.

The CBSG Consortium is also announcing successful field trials of its cross-carrier, cross-border, mobile payment service that is enabled by TBCASoft’s Cross-Carrier Blockchain Platform called CCPS (Cross-Carrier Payment System).  In January 2019, CBSG carrier members including Taiwan-based Far EasTone Telecommunications Co., Ltd. (“Far EasTone”) and Japan-based SoftBank Corp. (“SoftBank”) completed mobile wallet transactions on the payment network of the other carrier.  SoftBank mobile users traveled to Taiwan and purchased goods at a participating retailer using their mobile wallet while on Far EasTone’s network.  The trials use either (i) direct carrier billing where transactions are conveniently billed and paid through their carrier in their home-currency and potentially avoiding credit card overseas-transaction fees, or (ii) an OTT payment adapter to link CCPS to popular OTT payment solutions.  Similarly, Far EasTone mobile users traveled to Japan and made successful retail mobile wallet purchases while on SoftBank’s network.  CCPS provides a prompt settlement mechanism in cross-carrier services and offers users a friendly payment experience.  The two carriers have discussed a high-level business model for the payment service and to evaluate future commercial trials.

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 SoftBank, with U.S.-based Sprint Corporation (“Sprint”), and Far EasTone as initial founding members.  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.

NanRen Huang, President of APT said, “There’s a considerable amount of hype over the promise of 5G.  In managing such a complex ’ecosystem’ will require greater computing power and enhance security capacity.  It will promote blockchain technology as a new service in telecoms by higher speed connection enables transparency and efficiencies in the transaction.  It takes us the opportunity to cover new markets that were unreachable before, such as cross-carrier and cross-border services.

Farid Faraidooni, Deputy CEO – Enterprise Solutions of Emirates Integrated Telecommunications Company said: “At EITC, we continually strive to leverage best-in-class technologies to create world-class solutions that drive the future of the UAE, the Middle East region and the world.  We believe that blockchain developments have great potential to shape and redefine the Telecom ecosystem, especially with regards to next-generation use cases.  By joining CBSG, we are proud to solidify our commitment to this expert consortium of blockchain experts and to remain akin to the futuristic agenda of the UAE, as well as the country’s Blockchain Strategy 2021.”

Nikos Angelopoulos, Group CIO of MTN said, “Blockchain technology has real potential to transform many facets of our business.  As we are going through the advent of the ecosystem economy, it is crucial for us to harness technologies like blockchain to create fast, efficient and innovative solutions for our customers and our partners.  There are potentially limitless opportunities in existing core areas (e.g. customer management, fraud management, asset management, roaming, wholesale, supply chain) and for exciting new capabilities (e.g. identity-as-a-service, eSIM/IoT, 5G enablement, payments).  To be successful, we need to deploy the right services at the right time in order to create and capture value in the marketplace.  By joining the CBSG consortium, we will learn together with leading major telecom operators to use blockchain as one of the vehicles of the Digital Transformation journey."

Sherman Lee, Executive Vice President of Far EasTone said, “There are many successful stories of applying blockchain technology in different industries.  Far EasTone has been pursuing opportunities to collaborate with partners in various industries, market segments, and locations, and even globally.  As an initial founding member of CBSG Consortium, we acquire the know-how and obtain new opportunities in the field of innovation.  Far EasTone has applied blockchain technology to mobile wallet roaming trials early this year.  With the increase of new members, we see more opportunities and can provide more various applications and secure services in the future.”

Ling Wu, Founder and CEO of TBCASoft, and Co-Chairman of the CBSG Consortium said, “I am very happy to welcome three progressive carriers into the consortium.  This increases the number of mobile users that we may reach through our consortium members, to 1.3+ billion.  I am also excited to announce the first successful field trials of our blockchain-based cross-carrier, cross-border payment service, by the CBSG Consortium carrier members.  TBCASoft is working together with Far EasTone, SoftBank, and soon other CBSG members on a production plan so we can provide secure blockchain-based payment services to their global users in the near future.”

 

About Asia Pacific Telecom

Asia Pacific Telecom is a leader in the provision of wireless telecom needs in Taiwan.  In 2014, APT launched 4G brand “Gt”, which stands for “Good Time”, to bring consumers better value at a lower price.  Gt Intelligent Life is the APT brand identity under which it provides mobile, broadband, digital services, and hardware and software solutions.  The year of 2016 was a transformation for APT, began to offer the use of LoRa, low-power wide area networks, to increase connectivity for the Internet of Things, a milestone in the development of the IoT in Taiwan.  Now, Asia Pacific Telecom is ready to meet the challenges of the Internet of Things and 5th-generation mobile networks with a seasoned, forward-looking team.

 

About du

Ever since it opened for business in 2006, du has worked hard to enhance and expand its bouquet of services in an industry that is at the heart of economic and social transformation.  Bringing people and businesses together is what it does best, offering mobile and fixed telephony, broadband connectivity and IPTV services to people, homes and businesses all over the UAE.  du also provides carrier services, a data hub, internet exchange facilities and satellite services for broadcasters.

 

About Far EasTone

Far EasTone Telecommunications (FET) is a leading company in Taiwan which provides telecommunications and digital application services.  FET honors “Trustworthy, Agile, Innovative, Collaborative” as its core values.  Since its inception in 1997, “Closing the Distance” has always been the brand spirit of FET, and the company continues to innovate and develop in the hopes to “Fit, Transform, Grow”.  Far EasTone was the first telecom operator in Taiwan to start operating 4.5G/LTE on 2,600MHz band in 2016.  Furthermore, FET worked with Ericsson to establish the first 5G Lab in Taiwan.  FET has continued to introduce new products and services utilizing access technologies, including 2G, 3G, 4G, 5G, and Wi-Fi.  FET proceeds the pursuit of customer satisfaction and strengthens vertical integration of the ICT industry and secure enterprise cloud services for the business community, to come to our vision of “FET Connects and Enriches Life”.  More information on http://www.fetnet.net.

 

About MTN Group

Launched in 1994, the MTN Group is a leading emerging market operator, connecting subscribers in 21 countries in Africa and the Middle East.  The MTN Group is listed on the JSE Securities Exchange in South Africa under the share code: “MTN”. As of 30 September 2018, MTN recorded 225,4 million subscribers across its operations in Afghanistan, Benin, Botswana, Cameroon, Ivory Coast, Ghana, Guinea Bissau, Guinea Republic, Iran, Liberia, Nigeria, Republic of Congo (Congo-Brazzaville), Rwanda, South Africa, Sudan, South Sudan, eSwatini, Syria, Uganda, Yemen and Zambia.

 

About SoftBank

SoftBank Corp. (TOKYO:9434), a subsidiary of SoftBank Group Corp. (TOKYO:9984), provides mobile communication, fixed-line communication, and Internet connection services to consumers and corporate customers in Japan.  Leveraging the innovative technologies of other SoftBank Group companies, SoftBank Corp. is also expanding into AI, smart robotics, IoT, FinTech, cloud security and other business sectors.  To learn more, please visit https://www.softbank.jp/en/.

 

About TBCASoft

TBCASoft is a U.S.-based company developing innovative blockchain technology specifically for telecommunication carriers.  Its consortium-based blockchain platform enables telecommunication carriers to create innovative services for their subscribers under a more secure, robust, and efficient environment.  TBCASoft is located in Sunnyvale, California, the center of Silicon Valley.  To learn more, please visit TBCASoft at www.tbcasoft.com.