Thailand Siam Commercial Bank Backs DeFi Ecosystem Author: Jimmy Aki Last Updated: 30 July 2021 Siam Commercial Bank, one of Thailand’s top banks, has announced a new investment venture that will see it become part of the growing decentralized finance (DeFi) space. Per a E27 report, the bank’s venture capital arm, SCB 10X, has backed the DeFi ecosystem Alpha Finance Lab. Enjoying Increased Investor Attention The report explained that the new investment matches SCB 10X’s strategy of making early-stage investments. Kaweewut Temphuwapat, the company’s head venture builder, explained to the news source that they had committed to embracing innovative technologies. At Alpha Finance Lab, they saw an opportunity to bridge the traditional and decentralized financial sectors. Backed by names like DeFiance Capital and the Spartan Group, Alpha Finance Lab is an ecosystem committed to building DeFi tools and protocols, hoping to draw interest in the sub-industry. The company’s initial product, Alpha Homora, operates as a protocol that leverages investors’ positions in yield farming pools. There was no information concerning any additional tools that the company might be working on. However, with new funding behind it, the firm should have an interesting product soon enough. The investment is coming when the DeFi space seems to be roaring back to life. Following what appeared to have been a cooling-off period, DeFi bills appear to be back with renewed hope – and deeper pockets. Data from last week showed that the total amount of crypto collateral locked across the different DeFi protocols surged to an all-time high of $12.3 billion. While the value appears to have come down since then, it is evident that the market is also reacting to Bitcoin reaching a new yearly high. Fresh off the news that top payment processor PayPal would be incorporating digital assets into its core business from next year, Bitcoin surged and has been able to sustain its rise so far. It appears that some of those gains have rubbed off on DeFi protocols as well. Siam Loves Blockchain As for Siam Commercial Bank, it appears to be continuing its gradual acceptance of digital assets. The bank made a bold move earlier this year, partnering with digital money transfer service Azimo to launch an instant cross-border payments service through RippleNet. Per an announcement, the service will serve transfers from Europe to Thailand. It aims to solve the challenges of costly and finicky global payments, with payments from Europe to Thailand now taking less than a minute to complete. Figures from the World Bank reveal that Thailand is one of the world’s main remittance destinations, with about $6.7 billion going to the country every year. However, it is also one of the most expensive countries to send and receive money. Remittances between Europe and Thailand historically take more than one business day to settle. However, Azimo can clear this almost instantly. “Thailand recently launched their instant payment network, and this partnership with the largest bank in the country allows us to get the time to settle payments down from around 24 hours to an average of 22 seconds. [It’s] faster to send money to Thailand than to someone else in Europe,” said Michael Kent, Azimo’s co-founder and executive chairman.