In the technological environments, the Blockchain lesson begins to be taken for granted and there is a tendency to talk more about applications rather than the theoretical basis on which they are based. And despite all the progress made and the rapid pace of the changes, companies remain orphans of knowledge and feel more prisoners of technology than at the gates of the Economy 4.0 revolution. And the first Blockchain transaction was made in 2009 and today it is essential in the public network of a country like Estonia, for example. Napster, Emule, Bitorrent or Skype were born from the development of distributed networks but the launch of cryptocurrencies like bitcoin took the concept to new levels of development.
Companies linked to blockchain
In Catalonia alone, about fifty companies are directly linked to Blockchain. Often wrapped more in the halo of the salespeople than in profitable practicality, the truth is that the disruptive value of Blockchain forces companies to be attentive to what this technology can do in their own sector.
This week a meeting took place in Barcelona between professionals from the sector interested in this practical application. The great attraction of Blockchain is to “transfer value within the network itself with security,” said David Martinez, expert in business model transformation at Addvante. The event held at the Seventy Hotel in Barcelona, brought together professionals willing to transform Blockchain into business, but led more than one to become even more distressed at the opportunities in sight on the horizon.
There are many who see in Blockchain the way not to depend on bank financing and open parallel financing routes. From the great giants of world trade such as Amazon, Alibaba, Google or Amazon, to any industrial company or energy service provider, the idea sounds like heavenly music and money in aim and not in cash. A world of less regulated rights and obligations opens and in the shadow of supervisions outside the system itself. And the matter will presumably be extended from these growing private and shadow agreements to new parallel universes between companies and customers.
The business models
From the day it follows that many new business models are in the making. To the question of how Blockchain will affect business, experts explain that it opens the door to eliminating intermediaries and consequent cost reduction. And they strive to explain that the system is safe, despite the future threat of the coming quantum computer.
Where is Blockchain applicable?
Four are the application areas of Blockchain technology in the company. The first is as a payment system. Cryptocurrencies or the use of these open doors to global payment systems outside the current banking requirements (remittances, etc.). It also opens the way to parallel forms of financing based on trust and the provision of future services.
The second field of action is the establishment of contracts between parties. They are developed in the field of the sale of energy (long-term supply and management of origins, renewable, etc.), but also in the management of digital rights, customer service, loyalty, etc.
The third way of Blockchain for its development focuses on document management and its implementation in public services, for example. This is the case of official records, medical records and even participatory processes (voting, etc.).
The fourth and most complex field for citizen understanding is that of investment in sophisticated financial products. It can be investment in financial derivatives, financing of new companies, debt issues, securities and shares, etc.
The size of the Blockchain market in the world is expected to reach $ 2.3 billion in a couple of years, at a 70% annual growth rate. A study by the Generalitat ensures that between 2014 and 2016, 296 patents were registered in the Blockchain sector, especially in the field of identity management and fraud control in digital transactions.
It is the banks themselves that are increasingly developing Blockchain applications for the control of financial instruments. Jorge Serna, from the Securitize firm, put the icing on the meeting by explaining the practical applications of Blockchain in the issuance of tokens or rights. And it is that the issuance and management of property records on assets is a development field that further complicates the global financial universe, efficient investment instruments anchored to the network of networks but far from the world of the economy of the last century.
Also published on Medium.