Binance launches ’Build For Bharat’ DeFi-focused program as part of its $50 million blockchain fund
Changpeng Zhao, CEO of Binance
Binance, the global blockchain company behind the world’s largest digital asset exchange, today launched ‘Build for Bharat’, a DeFi (decentralised finance) program with hackathon and acceleration opportunities for blockchain developers and startups in India.
The hackathon is sponsored by Google Cloud, along with leading technology companies while the acceleration comes under $50 million Blockchain for India Fund, launched by Binance and WazirX in March 2020.
“India has been one of the most interesting countries Binance has tapped into! We’ve seen entrepreneurs create robust blockchain-based solutions from scratch and scale it. With the second largest blockchain developer base in the world - India has already kickstarted the revolution of decentralisation and we’re here to fuel it," said Changpeng Zhao (CZ), CEO at Binance.
The program revolves around Mini-Tokens, Micro Financing Products, Blockchain Datasets, Blockchain-AI Solutions, and more decentralised financing products.
Decentralised finance, or DeFi, is the evolved version of traditional financial instruments. It runs through distributed architecture that works with a large, anonymous network of nodes instead of a centralised point of authority.
DeFi increases the capability of an individual to access and manage their financial resources without having to go through layers of privacy-invading permissions. One can draw loans, borrow funds, trade assets, and complete complex financial transactions with high speeds and low fees in no time. And all of these are accessible via a simple smartphone.
What does this mean for India?
This initiative comes in line with India’s flickering regulations around cryptocurrencies.
Even though Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) in India contribute to over 40 percent of the nation’s GDP, they aren’t technologically advanced enough to run their businesses without financial hassles.
DeFi can allow such powerful communities to fetch their financial needs without having to rely on time-consuming approvals and privacy-invading screening processes to transact funds, lend/borrow, and run day-to-day transactions without any intermediaries.
Over 30 million people are NRIs (Non-Resident Indians), many of whom send money to their homes back in India. On an average, cross-border remittances cost around five to seven percent of the transacted amount.
In 2019, India received over $83 billion in remittances, making it one of the top remittance receipts in the world. This comes with huge costs as people paid around $4-6 billion in transaction charges.
On the other hand, if these transactions were made using DeFi products, the cost would have significantly lessened. To give a better perspective, an individual with large Bitcoin holdings transferred $468 million for less than $400. This represents less than 0.000085 percent in fees.
Binance with its ‘Build for Bharat’ initiative has developed a platform for people to ideate, build, and deploy such decentralised financial services.
DeFi plays an extremely important role in the evolution of the financial industry as it introduces an open source, transparent, permissionless, flexible, and interoperable financial structure with a wider and broader global range for access.