French National Council of Clerks Deploys Blockchain Network

France’s National Council of Clerks of Commercial Courts (Conseil
National des Greffiers des Tribunaux de Commerce – CNGTC) has announced the
deployment of a blockchain network aimed at streamlining the management of
commercial and corporate registry.

The blockchain network will be used from 2019 by the clerks
operating in commercial courts across France with the goal of improving
transparency and efficiency by enhancing the management of legal transactions related
to lifecycle of companies.

The first tests were run successfully, involving four court
clerks and IT providers, and subsequently, a roadmap was developed to move the
platform gradually into full scale production in the first half of 2019. In the
pilot, the CNGTC said it was able to decrease the time to update the registry
from several days for some complex cases to a single day.

“This project, which is the result of an autonomous
initiative between clerks of commercial courts and IBM, is the continuation of
our efforts to be pioneers in the adoption of innovative technologies, to
strengthen the quality of the public service provided by the commercial justice
system, dedicated to the expectations and requirements of today’s multipolar
and interconnected economic world,” said
Sophie Jonval, president of the CNGTC.

“We must be both pragmatic and at the forefront of progress
on a technology such as blockchain. The latter represents a major potential
technology for our profession and for the modernization of the tools of
commercial justice, reflecting our status, our mission and our professional
rules.”

The blockchain platform is designed to make it possible to
streamline the exchange of information among the clerks and ensure traceability
of notifications related to legal changes. It will be used to record and share
information related to the exchanges of regulatory information related to
companies’ difficulties, and the changes of status of companies registered on
the French territory, such as corporate names, new branch offices, as well as
the dissolution of businesses.

The network was developed by IBM and built on the Hyperledger Fabric framework, an open source project from the Linux Foundation.

“This initiative is a first in the justice sector in France and is a perfect example of blockchain’s role in helping regulated professions as they transform,” said Vincent Fournier, senior manager for blockchain at IBM France.

“Blockchain’s qualities are ideal for this use, improving the clerks’ business processes and adapting to the ever-changing nature of their missions.”

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