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Innovation

Innovation

BBVA plans to invest as much as $150 million in new capital to support Propel, bringing its total commitment to over $400 million, including its previous investment in 2016. The announcement builds on the initial successful relationship established five years ago, which has enabled Propel to partner with leading innovators such as Coinbase, DocuSign, Hippo, Guideline, and Neon.

Alicia Pertusa, head of Client Solutions Strategy at BBVA, has been involved in the different 'blockchain' research projects and pilots that BBVA has carried out over the past five years. The launch of its first bitcoin transaction and custody service in Switzerland was a landmark achievement for BBVA. The rollout was made possible thanks to the regulatory framework set up by the Helvetian country, which provides a unique opportunity to explore innovation in digital asset management. In this interview, Pertusa explains how this service is just a first step in an area that is going to have a direct impact on how we exchange not only money, but also any valuable asset or piece of information.

The emergence of technologies such as artificial intelligence, machine learning and blockchain has exponentially multiplied the volume of data used, putting current computer systems to the test. Despite the fact that the arrival of 5G promises an improvement in these limitations, it is not enough to respond to the performance demands of this latest generation technology. An alternative to this is edge computing.

Central bank-backed digital currencies, such as the potential digital euro and digital yuan, may become a reality in the coming years. Unlike cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin and Ethereum, these currencies promise less volatility and greater security. In addition, they will have the support of their respective monetary institutions, responsible for ensuring financial stability.

Pressure to get on board with remote working, adapting to the changes in a market revolutionised by the pandemic, and dealing with customers who have new and urgent needs. Startups have faced unprecedented challenges in 2020, but their digital DNA has helped them make fast decisions to handle these tests.