Jack Ma takes on murky China charities in first blockchain foray

Wednesday, August 3, 2016

Chinese billionaire Jack Ma wants to pry the lid off China’s opaque charities. Ant Financial, the affiliate of Alibaba Group Holding Ltd he controls, is using the technology behind bitcoin to record transactions and improve the accountability of the country’s philanthropic organisations.

The company began a tamper-proof ledger based on blockchain technology to record donations made by its more than 400 million users of Alipay, the online payments and investment service.

Donors will be able to track transaction histories and gain a clearer understanding of where their funds go and how they’re used, Chief Technology Officer Cheng Li said. That makes it tougher to alter records, and may help restore some of the trust that’s been squandered over the years.

Chinese philanthropy rose 10-fold to $US15 billion ($A19.7 billion) in the decade through 2014, according to the official Xinhua News Agency. But the sector has been plagued by scandals and mismanagement.

Source: Financial Review (link opens in a new window)

blockchain, fintech, philanthropy