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Credit Suisse Announces Participation in Utility Settlement Coin Initiative

Credit Suisse announced today that it has joined a consortium of 11 financial institutions and Clearmatics Technologies, a blockchain start-up, to create the Utility Settlement Coin ("USC"), a new form of digital cash for clearing and settling financial transactions over blockchain. The Utility Settlement Coin project began as a joint enterprise between UBS and Clearmatics Technologies in late 2015.

Emmanuel Aidoo, Head of the Distributed Ledger and Blockchain Effort at Credit Suisse, said: "Credit Suisse has been monitoring the development of USC for over 18 months and recognize that the digital representation of FIAT currency supported by blockchain is complementary to our bank’s distributed ledger strategy, and our involvement in the USC project at this time can help drive momentum. We think USC has the potential to streamline post-trade processing, reducing friction and risk."

Romain Dumas, Head of Rates Repo and Collateral Optimization at Credit Suisse, commented: "The Utility Settlement Coin is a fully collateralized digital currency backed by cash held at a Central Bank. The applications of USC extend beyond payments and could ultimately optimize efficiencies in margin and collateral obligations and reduce systemic risk. We believe that the USC Project can serve as a learning experience or stepping stone for a Central Bank-issued digital currency."

Along with Clearmatics and the other partner financial institutions, Credit Suisse will also contribute to the design and implementation of USC and take part in ongoing working groups to help drive the project forward.

Credit Suisse has been at the forefront of blockchain technology and development across internal research and development, partnerships with early stage startups, and industry consortiums and peer collaborations.