Shinhan Financial Investment – a brokerage house that’s part of Korea’s second largest banking group – is launching a blockchain-based peer-to-peer stock lending service.

This would allow individuals to borrow or lend securities from or to other individuals directly instead of having to go through an intermediary. By doing so, the service will make what used to be a complicated, expensive process much more accessible to the masses:

“Securities lending and borrowing transactions are normally inefficient and expensive for anyone but larger investors. Commissions can be high and accurate information difficult to obtain. With a P2P service, individual owners of stock should be able to easily and cheaply lend their shares directly to others, earning a fee in the process. Individual short sellers will potentially be able to borrow stock from willing counterparties without having to pay exorbitant fees to large institutions.”

The peer-to-peer lending service launches Monday.

Shinhan’s move is also interesting from a policy perspective. The project was one of only five blockchain initiatives admitted into the Financial Services Commission’s regulatory sandbox (ICONLOOP’s “my-ID” was one of the other four). Shinhan developed the service together with Directional, a Korean fintech company founded by a former lawyer who left her job at Korea’s largest law firm because the law was boring and she wanted a challenge.

The Shinhan group has shown some enthusiasm for blockchain. Last month, Shinhan Card acquired a patent for a blockchain-based credit payment system. In May, Shinhan Bank launched a blockchain-based platform to streamline the lending process. The group isn’t that hot on anonymous cryptocurrency users, though.

Also in the Korean blockchain space…

(By Richard Meyer, CoinDesk, Aug. 2)

We highlighted this last week, so there’s no reason to go into it again, except to note that the news has gotten quite a bit of press, as has the fact that the regulation-free zone isn’t so “regulation-free” for ICOs or anything else related to cryptocurrency.

(By Tim Alper, Cryptonews, Aug. 4)

Cryptonews looks at how Korea’s stablecoin projects are going. Young people seem to be taking to them pretty well in Gimpo. A lawyer told the news site, however, that the government’s cryptocurrency ban has turned local tokens into “glorified digital vouchers.”

(CoinGeek, Jul. 31)

Dr. Craig White, Jimmy Nguyen, Steve Shadders and many others will be at the CoinGeek Seoul conference in October 2019.

Speaking of blockchain events, Korea Blockchain Week 2019 will be taking place in Seoul from Sept. 27 to Oct. 4. The theme of this year’s conference is “The Real and The Virtual.”