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Nubank and Santander move to integrate blockchain into the Brazilian banking system

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(Kitco News) - The Brazilian fintech bank Nubank has announced the creation of its own token, Nucoin. It will deploy on the Polygon network and allow for the creation of a rewards program for its 70 million Latin American clients. 

Nubank plans to airdrop Nucoin to customers in the first half of 2023, with the token serving "as the basis for its customers' loyalty rewards program and will have benefits such as discounts and other advantages," the announcement said. 

According to Fernando Czapski, general manager for Nucoin, "This project is another step ahead in our belief in the transformative potential of blockchain technology and to democratize it even more, going beyond the purchase, sale and maintenance of cryptocurrencies in the Nu app."

One notable fact about this development is that Nubank is backed by Warren Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway and Softbank. Buffett is known for referring to BTC as "rat poison squared" and has a history of negative comments about the crypto industry. 

Earlier this year, Berkshire Hathaway made headlines when it sold a combined $3.1 billion worth of Visa and Mastercard stocks and simultaneously purchased $1 billion worth of Nubank stock.  

Nubank is one of the world's largest digital banking platforms, with customers spread out across Brazil, Mexico and Colombia. Since the launch of its crypto trading platform at the end of June, more than 1.8 million users have signed up to utilize the service. 

"Nubank's customer loyalty rewards program, powered by Polygon, will deliver the transformative benefits of blockchain technology to its customers, while acknowledging the shift happening in the traditional finance space," said Sandeep Nailwal, co-founder of Polygon.

Following the announcement from Nubank, the price of Polygon's MATIC token has increased 14.7% from a low of $0.776 on Oct. 21 to its current value of $0.89. 

Santander begins testing blockchain-based tokenization 

In other banking news out of Brazil, a local branch of the major global bank, Santander, has launched the testing of a blockchain-based tokenization platform for transferring ownership of used cars and real estate in the South American country. 

The new platform is designed to automate the process of transferring property registration by deploying smart contracts based on a settlement method known as delivery versus payment, which guarantees the ownership transfer after successful payment.

Santander partnered with the digital custody and Web3 infrastructure provider Parfin to develop the new offering. 

Alex Buelau, Parfin's co-founder and chief technology officer, indicated that the platform will be a permissioned blockchain network developed from the Ethereum blockchain, meaning that it will function similarly to Ethereum but will not be publicly accessible.  

The new project is part of the central bank of Brazil's Financial Innovations Laboratory (Lift), which includes a set of initiatives meant to facilitate the creation of a digital real, Brazil's central bank digital currency. The digital real is scheduled to launch in 2024. 

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