Spain’s largest lender, Banco Santander SA, named Ex JPMorgan executive Blythe Masters its senior blockchain adviser as financial institutions compete to search new ways for the technology behind digital currency Bitcoin. Blockchain advocates, or distributed ledger technology, say it has the potential to shake up how financial markets operate. The technology creates a shared database in which users can trace every transaction that administered. Santander is one of several banks investing in this sector to avoid being left behind by fintech start-ups.
Citigroup, BNP Paribas and Goldman Sachs are among other huge global banks that have invested in the technology. Masters, who spent 27 years at JPMorgan, has been leading the charge into blockchain by bankers. The blockchain software company she initiated, Digital Asset Holdings, has raised more than $60 million from shareholders such as Goldman Sachs and the Australian Securities Exchange, which is partnering with the company to work on using the technology in the cash-equities market. Masters was previously the chairman of Santander Consumer USA Holdings’ board. She rose to prominence during the 1990s when she helped to create the credit-derivatives market. Her appointment comes shortly after Santander became the first British bank to start using blockchain to record international fees.