Bradesco agrees blockchain deal with Japan's largest bank

The Brazilian bank will work with MUFG on Ripple-based international money transfers.

Brazilian bank Bradesco has agreed a partnership with Japan's largest bank MUFG (formerly Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi) for the launch of an international money transfer service based on Ripple's blockchain technology.

Clients of both banks will be able to use the service, with Bradesco describes as a "real-time and low-cost" international money transfer facility. The transfers will be available at branches by September 2019 then implemented across the bank's digital channels.

The service is also described by Bradesco as a launchpad to extend the functionality to its international network of partner banks, which should happen within the coming months.

Currently, international bank transfers can take up to two days to be processed and fees to consumers start from $30 and can reach up to R$ 450 depending on the amounts involved.

Over the last few years, Bradesco has been placing efforts on blockchain technology to streamline operations and costs, while improving services and products.

The bank - which is one of the largest in Brazil and has acquired HSBC's local operations in 2016 - has the technology as one of the key strategic priorities of its open innovation program, InovaBRA.