Germany’s Commerzbank has run a blockchain pilot project, which it says promises to open up access to supply chain finance for corporate clients.

The bank, supported by enterprise software giant SAP, successfully completed an end-to-end integration between SAP’s S/4 HANA business processes and the Corda blockchain platform provided by distributed ledger consortium R3, which is backed by many major banks.

Commerzbank described the project as “the first step toward enhancing the supply chain network of corporate clients to offer more efficient access to trade and supply chain finance services.”

“The successful connection test between Corda and SAP, as an important enterprise technology provider, is a significant milestone in our journey to develop and implement digital product solutions,” said Nikolaus Giesbert, Commerzbank divisional board member for fixed income, currencies and commodities, trade finance and cash management.

“In trade finance, we see significant potential and the need to support digital data flows along the supply chain of our corporations. This is only possible by connecting enterprise resource planning (ERP) systems to new distributed ledger technology (DLT) networks and platforms.

“We will share the results of this technical test in our ongoing projects with R3 and aim to use the SAP connection with Corda in future pilot transactions.”

David Rutter, CEO and founder of R3, added: “Trade finance is a key area of focus for R3 as we work with our partners to develop a vibrant ecosystem of applications on Corda. Integrating the platform with SAP’s business processes is a further milestone in enabling widespread adoption of Corda by businesses around the globe.”

Deploying Corda’s secure blockchain technology to the SAP cloud platform opens up the possibility for the Corda platform to integrate other technologies and capabilities, including application programming interface (API) management, machine learning, and analytics.