Westpac Banking Corporation (ASX: WBC) is in the business of providing financial and banking services in Asia pacific region, New Zealand, Asia, Australia and internationally. Westpac is eying to be a global leader in Block chain technology. The company has developed it’s first proof of concept which is an integration of data analytics, internet of things, artificial intelligence and blockchain. The proof of concept will help in digitizing inventory management, trade and procurement. This system will be able to forecast the prices and demand of goods. It will also make the payment and procurement process automatic. Through the use of artificial intelligence, the blockchain technology will be able to make a purchase at the right moment and execute the stock orders automatically. The General Manager of the company has expressed that they want this technology to become more mature before commercializing it and it was important for the company to be in leading position in the Blockchain development. Blockchain technology can help the company in becoming more efficient and can reduce the expenses in the long run.
Meanwhile, the group has been performing decently despite the banking sector challenges. In the first half of the FY 2018, the statutory net profit was $4,198m which was 7% more than the first half last year. The company is having a Cash earnings of $4,251m which is 6% increase from the first half of last year. Cash earning per share is 123 cents this year which is 4% higher than the previous year’s first half. Net interest income of Westpac increased $665m from the first half of FY 2017. Due to the decrease in the individual provision for larger facilities, the operating charges of the company were 20% lower than H1 2017. Due to increase in the salary and technology expenses and rise in regulatory cost the operating expenses increased by $92m. Westpac declared interim dividend of 94 cents which was paid on 4th July 2018. Total loan of the company was increased by $34.4 billion. The total customer deposits increased by $23.4 billion which is 5% more than the first half of FY 2017. Company witnessed an increase of $1.8 billion in the certificates of deposits in the first half of FY2017. Advances in the digital technology is helping company to improve the customer experience and improve productivity and risk management at the same time. Westpac’s share price declined by 0.036% on 18 September 2018; and the same traded at $27.89 with market capitalization of 95.83bn as on 18 September 2018.
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