Translated by
2019/04/02 09:12:10

Blockchain blockchain

Blockchain — a distributed database which stores information on all transactions of participants of a system in the form of "a chain of blocks" (quite so with engl. Blockchain is translated). All users of a blockchain, speakers have a registry access as the collective notary who confirms truth of information in the database. The blockchain can be applied to financial transactions, identification of users, creation of technologies of cyber security, etc.

Content

As the blockchain works

The Blockchain technology is capable to transform the settled business processes and to considerably change work with regulators. Nevertheless, the blockchain remains technology experimental — many problems of its use are not solved yet.

Interest in a blockchain continues to grow: in 2016 many banks, the exchanges and the financial technical-companies announced start of own projects on development of technology. The blockchain remains one of the hottest topics in the field of financial services and in the stock markets, and there are all bases to expect growth of speed of its distribution. At once several large financial institutions created commands for a research of opportunities of technology, and some market participants integrated in consortia for development of standards of its use. According to the report submitted at the World economic forum in the 2016th in three last years more than 1.4 billion dollars were invested in studying of a blockchain and opportunities of its application in the financial services industry ("Distributed Ledger Technology: Implications of Blockchain for the Securities Industry", FINRA)[1].

The technology is really capable to protect data with which we should work, at the same time having made them more available and transparent. Besides, the blockchain can reduce considerably costs and minimize time necessary for the solution of the arising problems and elimination of errors.

The blockchain appeared as technology for start in the address of bitcoin, and was first used only for management of cryptocurrencies. However from the moment of its emergence in 2009, scope of application significantly extended. And now in the most different articles, new options of use of technology, including in the trade reporting are discussed at forums and conferences; at non-cash payments, checks and payments; in accounting; monitoring; risk management; audit; managerial and financial accounting; compliance (including prevention of financial crimes though, of course, in this sphere are not limited to fight against fraud of a possibility of a blockchain). The matter is that information saved using a blockchain can be written in the general register available in real time or very close to it. Means, all concerned parties can be directly involved in process — even those from them who could expect only the standard report upon completion of transaction earlier.

Implementation of a blockchain by determination difficult process, but the main idea of technology it is simple: the distributed register or the database started at the same time on a set (occasionally it is about millions) the nodes distributed worldwide between different users and the organizations. The uniqueness of a blockchain consists in the invariance or irreversibility which is guaranteed by the cryptographic system of protection. For example, when transactions from the register are grouped in blocks and register in the database, record is preceded by cryptographic verification therefore to change a register status by any frauds it is impracticable. The trust to a blockchain is spoken well also that any changes of the blocks given in a chain are possible, only if participants of network confirm legitimacy of transaction according to the general rules and protocols.

Market solutions blockchain

Main article: Blockchain (world market)

Creation of information systems using technology of the distributed registers (blockchain), is fast-growing business. In more detail about its development here.

Blockchain in Russia

The overview of development of blockchain technology in Russia in articles:

Projects on a blockchain

Project information using blockchain technologies gathers in article:

As use a blockchain

In the middle of January, 2016 the CB Insights analytical company published the list of the largest industries where the blockchain[2] can be used[2].

The CB Insights analytical company published the list of the largest industries where the blockchain can be used
The CB Insights analytical company published the list of the largest industries where the blockchain can be used

Medical uchredzheniye

Main article: A blockchain in medicine

Construction companies

Main article: A blockchain in construction

Banks

Main article: A blockchain in banks

Banks serve for safe storage and transfer of the assets having value. A blockchain, being the protected digital register, can perform these functions. So in the next years it is worth expecting strong influence of a blockchain on the bank industry, experts consider. According to some market participants, such technology will allow banks to save about $20 billion due to abolition of intermediaries in transactions.

Payments and money transfers

According to the report of the World Economic Forum, the decentralized payment technologies, including bitcoin, can transform "business architecture" of money transfers which did not change more than 100 years. The blockchain is capable to bypass these inefficient systems and to create more open, fast and beskomissionny payment flow worldwide.

Public sector

The blockchain can do away with bureaucracy in state agencies

On February 27, 2019 the consulting company Booz Allen Hamilton submitted the overview of possible solutions of bureaucratic problems in state agencies using blockchain technologies.

Specialists of Booz Allen Hamilton claim that the blockchain can bring to the government indisputable benefit. Thanks to transparent and hostless system data validation can be performed by any participant that will allow to strengthen trusted relationships of state agencies with citizens. Besides, use of a blockchain for some services will allow to carry out an independent inspection of complaints.

Possible application of a blockchain administrative work in public service is considered that should reduce bureaucracy
Possible application of a blockchain administrative work in public service is considered that should reduce bureaucracy

Other potential benefit is confidential data protection, such as social security numbers, dates of birth, addresses and driver's license numbers. According to analysts, public servants are main objectives of hackers. But cyber attacks can be reduced or prevented at deployments of blockchain technologies.

The third possible advantage — cost reduction and increase in efficiency. Use of a blockchain can reduce redundancy of data, simplify processes, reduce load of audit, increase security and provide integrity of data.

Government agencies, certainly, are interested in the long term in uses of a blockchain. A variety of government functions provides incredibly wide field of activity for blockchain technologies and maintains interest and a flow of investments. Examples of use of a blockchain in state agencies include vote, the automated data recording, accounting, transactions and acoount reconciliation, social and humanitarian aid, the markets of assets and providing to individuals control over the confidential data and medical records.

According to analysts, the blockchain can increase efficiency of the decentralized processes. For example, use of blockchain technologies is capable to accelerate collecting of documentation from several government institutions which do not have the general systems or close organizational relations. Similar use can solve a problem of the dispersed processes, such as issue of permissions and registration.

Information exchange between the state organizations and the private sector about assistance in emergencies, insurance claims, medical claims and other multilateral transactions can improve coordination of work of these structures and is considerable improve the relation of citizens.

Thanks to a blockchain administrative functions are made easier as documentation is kept automatically and the need for people who request the central storage of documents disappears to get an information access about owners
Thanks to a blockchain administrative functions are made easier as documentation is kept automatically and the need for people who request the central storage of documents disappears to get an information access about owners

In addition to the bureaucracy extended by a government problem corruption is, and analysts note that the blockchain can also play a role in fight against it. Some of early cases of use of a blockchain were concentrated on the idea of restriction of corruption, fraud, theft and inappropriate use of the state resources by both the government, and citizens. However cases of thefts of cryptocurrency emphasize that they even a blockchain system cannot ensure complete safety.

Blockchain technology are capable not only to struggle with bureaucracy and corruption, but also in general to change a method of providing public services to citizens. Opportunities are almost boundless: blockchain technology provide to citizens and the enterprises an opportunity to manage and share information, reduce problems at assessment of intellectual property and royalty payments, provide digital identification documents and economic freedom.

However wide use of a blockchain in the government requires huge investments of work and means. Analysts note that the blockchain technology, at all their attractiveness, is not an instant panacea.[3]

Application in the field of observance of regulatory requirements

As soon as data remain in a chain of blocks, they cannot be changed or deleted. It allows to use a blockchain as the documentary evidence or confirmation of transfer of digital assets (bitcoins or other digital currency). Equally well it can be used for information storage about the owner of the actual property — in 2017 the efficiency of such technique is estimated in National Land Service of Sweden. Using an experimental system on the basis of a blockchain it is going to digitize processes in the field of purchase and sale of the real estate. The invariance allows to use a blockchain and as the method of the proof of compliance of processes to regulatory requirements — record of all actions and the received results can serve as the auditor magazine for[4] in a chain of blocks].

Besides, the last can get almost in real time access to an internal blockchain of financial institution — for viewing information. Such innovation will allow regulators to play more active role at control and brings closer them to a process participants status. And it, in turn, can reduce considerably time and efforts necessary for financial institutions for creation of the regulatory reporting. So at smaller costs the blockchain will provide higher quality, accuracy and reliability of process.

The blockchain is perspective also in terms of counteraction to money muling (AML) and the Know the Client procedure (KYC). Now banks and other financial institutions for verification of each new client should make a huge number of actions, and process of collecting and verification of information in some markets can drag on for several months. If necessary data already were in the distributed database steady against cracking, then processes obligatory now it would be possible to refuse many simply. The blockchain for this purpose is ideal, any changes in client data will be instantly widespread among all participants of a blockchain. The blockchain can also provide records about compliance of separate actions of each client to regulatory requirements. Besides, each user will be conditional custodian of information in a blockchain that will provide additional protection against plunder of personal data.

One more option of application of a blockchain — creation of a system on management of personal user information. Use of a blockchain allows to reduce processes of KYC/AML to simple automated verification which the corresponding system could carry out in scales of all market. It is quite probable that exchange of confidential information on clients between financial institutions will become a norm as soon as in a blockchain ecosystem trusted relationships are established. It is remarkable that the international SWIFT system already announced that its own register will be in the future available to KYC which includes these more than 1000 banks now to the entrusted partners and clients. Such action can be considered one of the first steps to introduction of digital certificates in the financial sphere — and it and there is a final business objective of the movement in this direction.

Smart contracts

Main article: Smart contracts

The smart contract (engl. Smart contract)  — the computer algorithm intended for the conclusion and maintenance of commercial contracts in blockchain technology.

Art

Main article: A blockchain in art

The industries on distribution of music, texts, a digital art, new religions - use a blockchain. Read more here.

Industry of air transport

In November, 2017 SITA Lab, research division of the supplier of IT solutions for the air-transport industry of SITA company, published outputs of the research FlightChain: 'smart contracts' for shared control of data?[5], devoted to 'smart contracts' based on Blockchain technology which was carried out together with British Airways airline, Heathrow airport and the international airports of Geneva and Miami. You watch FlightChain in more detail (A blockchain for the air-transport industry)

Cyber security

Though the blockchain is the open register, data transmission is strictly checked and performed using advanced cryptographic methods. At widespread introduction of this technology which is considered more reliable in comparison with the traditional systems the probability of hacker cracking will decrease. The cyber security will increase also due to failure almost from all human intermediaries, consider in Goldman Sachs.

Education

If many educational institutions pass to transparent documentation (diplomas, the academic references, etc.), using a blockchain or the similar protected technologies, swindlers in this sphere will become less and also it will be possible to get rid of manual verifications of paper documents.

Vote

The West Virginia University already thought of application of the platform built on a blockchain for vote. Thanks to it students could give the votes via mobile devices, and results of elections would be fair.

Leasing and car sale

In 2015 Visa and DocuSign companies created the special software based on a blockchain for increase in convenience of payment of lease of the car and commission of leasing payments for it. Payments are automatically charged off in process of operation of the vehicle according to the agreement. The similar solution can be used at car sales and their setting on accounting.

Network technologies and Internet of Things

IBM and Samsung work on the concept of Adept assuming use of similar to a technology blockchain for creation of the decentralized network of a huge number of different devices of Internet of Things which will be able to interact with each other for the self-contained unit of updates, elimination of errors and power management.

Forecasting

In the markets of technologies of forecasting and carrying out researches, the analysis and consulting the change can result from implementation of a blockchain. An example is the online platform of predictions Augur. By means of a blockchain the service intends is decentralized to offer services of rates not only on sport and actions, but also on results of elections, probability of natural disasters, etc.

Sharing of cars

The concept of sharing of the private car using online services of search of fellow travelers (ridesharing) does not assume decentralization: Uber or other similar company acts as the dispatching center and uses algorithms of control of drivers and their expenses. However the Israeli startup of La'Zooz offered service which already christened Anti-Uber.

Developers created digital currency (like bitcoins) which account is kept by means of the reminding blockchain technology. People travel for this virtual money and also earn them during the trips. At the same time the application monitors movement of users.

Stock trading

The online retailer Overstock.com through TØ affiliated firm constructed the system allowing the companies to issue stocks and to take the credits under their pledge through a blockchain, and Chain startup together with the Nasdaq exchange works on the stock trading of private companies by means of a blockchain.

Power

In the field of power, traditionally conservative industry, the world practice of application of a blockchain is for the test stages and implementations of pilot projects. But already now these technologies apply for creation of the new energy and economic markets, the new systems of job specialization and new social reality[6].


For example, the German Conjoule since 2016 started a pilot project of connection to the blockchain platform of private photovoltaic systems and consumers. The project covers the territory of the German cities of Essen and Mülheim and also promotes purchase of the excess electric power made by solar power plants in private houses, residents of the neighboring area. Also conditions for sale of the "house" electric power to private and state legal entities of the region are created. In addition to transparency, freedom of signing of the contracts and market pricing, the company tries to create new social community in which foundation a mortgaged valuable of "net energy". Capitalization of the company already on start exceeded 4.5 million euros.

In addition to Germany at the European energy market also leading positions are taken by the British startup of Electron. For the platform test stage it loaded accidental data on more than 53 million points of electricity metering. This system is created for distribution control of energy and data writing about consumption. The main feature of this system – it is possible to reduce considerably switching time between suppliers of resources to optimize electric power cost and also to manage interaction between generators and the electric grid companies.

In America the main developments in the field of the distributed register fall on Grid+ company, LO3 Energy joint venture and ConsenSys. At the moment she created a prototype for exchange of certificates for energy of RES (renewable energy sources) and in the future is going to become the full-fledged platform for power sales activity. Connection of the decentralized power generation sources in the centralized network is the cornerstone of its concept. At the same time the electric power amounts which are not used by the producer are on sale to the next households. All producers and buyers are united in the traditional power supply network, and transaction management is exercised using a blockchain. For implementation of this concept use of "smart counters" and "smart contracts" technologies is obligatory. The first register amount of the made energy, and the second are necessary for carrying out and display of transactions in an automatic and protect mode.

One more company from America eMotorWerks and the German architect of the Share & Charge blockchain platform announced the project of a system using which any person can create the mini-station on charging of cars. Manage this technology through mobile application. Owners of stations will program the chargers, setting the selling price of the electric power and time necessary for charging. Using the application drivers will be able to see the next charging devices. Transactions on payment for charging of electric cars at such stations are going to be executed using a blockchain.

In Australia the main leader of development of technologies of the distributed register – the new PowerLedger project. The company develops power marketplace which grants the right to users to buy and sell excesses of solar energy. Believe in PowerLedger that their service is capable to save to households to 475 US dollars a year. For performing transactions the platform uses tokens which will be converted at the exchange with other digital money that gives to a system liquidity. Also PowerLedger developed a management system for energy for apartments in apartment apartment houses.

Thus, in world power the blockchain technology is generally applied in the field of microgeneration of RES, in creation of the decentralized networks and as the localized marketplaces between consumers and suppliers of resources in small territories in the conditions of free, competitive market. So far the market share of RES is small in comparison with the large power sources consuming hydrocarbons. But RES technologies promptly develop and become cheaper, and the number of microplayers of the energy market constantly grows. In this situation of a blockchain platform really can become in the future the strong competitor of a traditional power generating system or at least her backup.

Though in Russia more than 50 companies whose activity is connected with blockchain technologies are registered, in the domestic market enough bright players were not created. Implementation of a blockchain in the Russian power restrains low (in comparison with world) prices of electricity, overregulation of retail market and lack of the legislative arrangements necessary for its formation. Besides, maintenance of stability of power supply system in general remains a task, priority for the state, and problem solving of energy security – for upgrade of traditional generation is now started the new program of updating of capacities. So so far perspectives of a blockchain look more iridescent in the field of power service contracts where use of technology will allow to exclude disputes between their participants.


For the beginning of 2018 azvity infrastructures of "smart network" – a prerogative of the network organizations whereas the guaranteeing suppliers also are interested in improvement of intelligent systems of electricity metering and in formation on their base of the settlement platform. Precisely measured and recorded resource consumption is the cornerstone of trade relationship between the consumer and the supplier. It is obvious that for implementation of such plans it is necessary to change the legislation seriously. In this direction the sales companies intend to move, offering regulators the conceptual and detailed changes allowing to create the modern market capable to integrate relevant types of technologies of trade, the innovation household appliances (Internet of Things).

Supply chains (in tch food)

On August 22, 2017 IBM announced the project which purpose is studying of opportunities of use of blockchain technology for control of supply of food and increase in safety of food. The leading retailers and the food companies joined this initiative.

As the vice president for development explained a blockchain business of IBM of Brigid McDermott, it is about creation not of technology, and the whole ecosystem.

It is supposed that the blockchain capable to monitor work of hundreds of participants of mass production and a supply chain of food will allow to define quicker a source of the spoiled food, without allowing it to appear on counters of shops.

IBM creates a blockchain system for the organization of supply of food
IBM creates a blockchain system for the organization of supply of food

Annually 400 thousand people die because of the infected food. The problems affecting security of foodstuff such as pollution, spread of diseases and waste, are aggravated due to the lack of an information access and an opportunity to keep track of it. On defining the exact place of pollution, weeks can leave. For example, more than two months were required to understand with what farms deliveries of the papaya infected with a salmonella were conducted, note in IBM.

In addition to the American IT corporation, the new blockchain consortium included Nestle, Unilever, Tyson Foods, Kroger, Dole Food Company, McCormick & Company, Golden State Foods, Driscoll's, Berkshire Hathaway and McLane Company.

It should be noted that IBM has an experience of application of a blockchain for tracking of deliveries of food products. Since October, 2016 the company works on the similar project with Wal-Mart Stores retail network. System implementation on the basis of the distributed register allowed the retailer to reduce time necessary for control of transportation of mango from seven days to 2.2 seconds.[7]


The blockchain provides general transparency for different participants which under other conditions would be impossible. For example, whether the supply chain was interrupted? If yes, that its participants receive notifications in a supply chain.

Within several seconds it is possible to trace afterwards which the product is damaged as such data as the place of goods origin, batch number, these processings, purge dates and data on delivery are stored in a blockchain.

As a result, retail dealers in food and other members of network can quickly trace the contaminated products to their source, immediately remove them from the market and reduce spread of a disease.

Supply chain visibility plays a crucial role in satisfaction of needs of consumers. In the sector of retail, in particular, there is a set of primary opportunities which a supply chain the traceability and reliable information about origin and a status of food could adopt at blockchain technology, for example.

Thanks to an opportunity to monitor transactions in real time, consumers can trust supply chains. Information on origin and processing of products becomes more and more important for consumers, and in the long term will become important for the buyer. The end consumer can obtain such information by reading of a barcode.

It is possible to assume safely that thanks to a supply chain blockchain will not face bad reviews or scandals in 2018 any more.

Thanks to blockchain technology, any participant of a supply chain can get access to the necessary document in real time and on a permanent basis to see all changes which happen to its status. Of course, this transparency gives the chance to immediately detect inefficient links and the subsequent opportunity to correct them in the shortest possible time. It leads to long-term cost reduction. Solutions in real time

The blockchain technology opens new opportunities in supply chain management, including solutions in real time which all participants of a chain can accept.

The continued access in real time to a supply chain allows to work with all connected transactions is iterative.

For example, the company which beforehand knows that delivery contains only a part of the ordered goods can re-plan and get access to own warehouse stock, order missing goods from other supplier or revise the price.

Taking into account it it is possible to redirect a container on other warehouse or to release tanks in a warehouse, on the vehicle or on the loading platform for cost reduction. In case of mismatch each participant of a supply chain whom it will concern will be notified directly as it is described above.

Current problems

Threats and risks of blockchain

It is considered that transactions of cryptocurrencies are protected, and cryptographic schemes with public key cannot almost be cracked. However, it does not say that there are no weak spots connected with unsafe storage of keys or plunder by methods of social engineering.

Existence of weak points can be caused also by the platform a blockchain which can be unsafe owing to the used development environment or existence of vulnerabilities in IT-system architecture.

Other threat — emergence of quantum computers which can theoretically open all encryption algorithms with public keys.

There is dangerous "attack-51" connected with consolidation of number of participants, critical for network, for the purpose of branching of chains in the direction, convenient for malefactors

Why the blockchain is not suitable for trade in physical goods

On August 16, 2018 the Boston Consulting Group (BCG) company specializing in management consulting provided a research in which problems of implementation of a blockchain in retail chain stores are considered. In spite of the fact that the companies and banks since 2016 actively use a blockchain, authors of the report consider that the new technology is not suitable for trade operations with physical goods.

It is considered that the blockchain which was originally used as the platform for cryptocurrency should increase transparency of transactions and reduce a fraud risk. However by August, 2018 the goods turnover using a blockchain is still too small that it was possible to claim with confidence when its volume reaches critical mass, Reuters reports.

The blockchain, according to many financial institutions, increases performance, does transactions by more transparent and minimizes a fraud risk
The blockchain, according to many financial institutions, increases performance, does transactions by more transparent and minimizes a fraud risk

According to the coauthor of the report of BCG Antti Belt, the main problem of use of a blockchain is that the cryptocurrency is not intended for physical transactions — it is impossible to trace a physical entity in the virtual world.

«
This collision of two worlds — he noticed.
»

Besides, implementation of new technologies should be followed by the terminology approval, and is still not clear whether transition to a blockchain platform is justified from the economic point of view.

«
The market appeared long ago, and everyone uses the language. How to define product quality, delivery schedules, etc. — are required approved action for both parties … People spend millions of dollars, and sometimes and more than $100 million, for the IT system. The question is in whether want to make it again — reported Belt.
»

Researchers also note that is not clear in what degree of the dealer are ready to accept the blockchain capable to lower already insignificant profit share. In the report of BCG it is emphasized that in process of formation of platforms the inefficiency of pricing and uneven dissemination of information which were the cornerstone of intermediary assignments will disappear, and with them also the profit of sellers will be dissolved.

At the same time, according to analysts, use of a blockchain is capable to increase transparency of transactions, to create more efficient and liquid market. Commercial transactions will cease to be limited to bilateral agreements and will pass to more flexible transactions on the basis of electronic platforms between a great number of sellers and buyers. The more widely new technologies will be implemented, the less there will be a role of intermediaries, and is still not clear whether they will want to use a blockchain actively. 

The coauthor of the report of BCG Steven Kok notes that the blockchain will bring the greatest benefit in  those spheres of trade where an important role is played by goods origin. For example, it concerns trade in diamonds. So,  the De Beers company since May, 2018 uses technology of the distributed register for tracking of the most expensive diamonds from  the place of their  production to  the sales representative to save a supply chain from swindlers and illegal operation of fields

The companies Natixis IBM]] also Trafigura develop a solution blockchain for financial transactions in the field of trade in raw materials which will be used in transactions in the market of crude oil USA.

As the buyer, the seller and the banks servicing them are in the unified register, all parties can browse and share the status of transaction at the same time. They can monitor transaction from the moment of confirmation and validation of the new transaction before verification process of quality of crude oil, its final delivery and canceling of the letter of credit.

The blockchain will become the effective tool in  commodity market, only if   all use it. Incidental transactions in  the distributed register  do not influence  an overall picture, concluded in  BCG.[8]

Low speed of work because of cryptography

Serious obstacle on the way of widespread introduction of a blockchain often call work speed. On performance blockchains considerably concede to traditional databases, and on i.e. the reason: the cryptographic component which, actually, also gives to a blockchain so important advantages means difficult calculations. For an example, capacity of the Bitcoin system makes only seven transactions per second. Certainly, this indicator does not come within miles of two thousand operations per second on average passing through VISA payment system which maximum capacity reaches 56 thousand transactions per second at all (however, this reserve is never used more than on a third even during the periods of the most active purchases).

Of course, actively work on performance improvement of blockchains. In particular, for the BitShares cryptoplatform an opportunity to process up to 100 thousand transactions per second that, of course, sounds absolutely not bad is stated. However, it is necessary to consider that methods of determination of performance which are used in BitShares differ from commonly accepted. Actually, the distributed nature of a blockchain in principle complicates any comparisons, but so far the difference in performance remains huge and the account not for benefit of new technology.

Setup and infrastructure management

Setup and infrastructure management for support a solutions blockchain — one more problem for the organizations experimenting with technology. Commands which are engaged in information security, transactions, cloud computing and many in another processes begin implementation of a blockchain, positioning technology in the companies as a new solution for work with data and/or the code. At the same time the mentioned process can be very destructive — in particular because there are no acquired techniques of its successful implementation yet. In 2017 the first attempts to improve a situation (for example the project of Microsoft company under the name Bletchley or Hyperledger blockchain project) are made, however such systems are still not ready for full start.

In a talk on a fashionable trend businessmen often miss the main thing: the blockchain is a new technology of work with data, and not so new goods which can be resold with profit. Certainly, blockchain technology will help to reduce costs during the work with documents, but at first it is necessary to pay for development of the corresponding product to the third-party contractor.

Lack of reliable and effective technological solutions

One more reason not to hurry with implementation of blockchain technologies for July, 2017 – lack of uniform rules of the game the, i.e. reliable and effective technological solutions available to everyone. Work in this direction is already conducted – in Russia the working group under the leadership of the first Deputy Prime Minister Igor Shuvalov for implementation of blockchain technology in public administration is created.

It is possible after the products created for the solution of national objectives pass a running in within an administrative system they can be offered for implementation in business community. It is possible to give development by the Central Bank together with a number of profile departments of the online platform providing information and technical support for banking systems of cyber defense which should be ready by the end of 2017 as an example of similar work.

Lack of the legal framework

Use of blockchain technologies for 2017 is out of the legal framework. It can be illustrated on the example of ICO (Initial Coin Offering, i.e. primary placement of coins). Creators of startups release own digital coins (tokens), using technologies of a blockchain, and exchange them on cryptocurrencies or fiat currencies to attract necessary financing. Legal status of ICO is not defined in one country of the world today, and therefore such investments have no guarantees of return.

Developments of essentially new technological solutions are conducted, however you should not expect their mass implementation until when blockchain technologies receive specific legal position.

If to show excessive eagerness already today, it is possible to receive a product which will not justify forces and means spent for it as it can be used only for the internal use in the specific company, - Oleg Yakushev, the expert AO IK of TsERIH Capital Management considers.

2019

Business lost faith in a blockchain

In 2019 venture money will come to a blockchain industry much less, believe in CB Insights. At least, if the current rates of investments remain, then at the end of year it will receive only $1.6 billion that it is much less, than received a blockchain projects at the end of 2018, namely more than $4.1 billion. In a bigger degree participation in a blockchain projects of corporate investors will be reduced. So far in 2019 only 96 corporate bargains were concluded, so, at the end of year the number of the last can drop by 36% in comparison with 2018[9].

Among risks which interfere with growth of volume of venture investments analysts of CB Insights call a set of factors at once. Among the last — volatility of cryptocurrencies, ambiguity, and in many cases at all absence, the regulyatoriki and, of course, legal procedures concerning a number of projects, first of all in the USA. Separately the company pays attention to difficulties with scaling a blockchain projects and also restricted speed of transactions, including in a case with a bitcoin blockchain.

Nevertheless investments into a blockchain projects from a venture capital, most likely, in 2019 will exceed indicators of 2017, speak in CB Insights (for comparison: at the end of 2017 the industry received from traditional investors a little more than $1.2 billion). At the same time the majority of transactions turns out to conclude a blockchain companies of early stages today. So, the number of seed-transactions and investment rounds of series A grew on from 80% in 2017 to 88% according to the results of last months 2019.

As for transactions of the average level (series B and C), their share remains rather invariable, while transactions of later stage (series D and later) are practically absent.

«
"The growing share of transactions with the companies of early stages shows the general immaturity a blockchain market" — believe in CB Insights.
»

In terms of geography for the last months 2019 most of all transactions with participation of a venture capital were the share of the market of the USA (40%). Then China (15%), Great Britain (8%), Singapore (4%) and South Korea (3%) follow. Those who trust in a blockchain

The most active venture investors in a blockchain of CB Insights calls Digital Currency Group, Pantera Capital and Polychain Capital companies and also technology accelerators, first of all Boost VC.

Digital Currency Group as one of early investors in a blockchain wins first place in rating. In 2019 the company participated in 4 transactions, including $ a 65-billion investment round in the financial detailed project of Figure Technologies. Also the company invested in a blockchain platform for video Livepeer and the CoinFLEX cryptoexchange. It is followed by a technology accelerator of Boost VC under the leadership of Adam Dreyper (the son of the famous American investor Tim Dreyper) who invested for the last 5 years in more than 50th blockchain companies. Among the last transactions — investments into the decentralized DNS-service Unstoppable Domains, a marketplace of predictions of Guesser and Amun financial technical-company. On the third place — Blockchain Capital venture fund, also one of starsheyshy investors in the world in technology of the distributed registers.

As analysts of CB Insights note, investment funds from China also apply for the first roles: so, for the last 5 years the Febushi Capital company invested in the bigger number of the companies which are engaged in a blockchain than such leaders as Pantera and Polychain.

ICO came the end?

The ICO procedure allowed faunder to attract a blockchain projects billions of dollars using sale of tokens, without participation of venture funds and crowdfunding platforms. However today the much bigger volume of transactions falls to the share of a venture capital, and this trend can quite put an end to an era of ICO. The amount of funds which attracted a blockchain projects using traditional procedures of investment from 3rd quarter 2018 considerably overtakes the financing received on ICO. So, in the first quarter 2019, according to the estimates of CB Insights, projects received $609 million from traditional investors and only $120 million from investors within the ICO procedure. For comparison: in the first quarter 2018 similar indicators were $549 million and $6.88 billion respectively.

However in general financing a blockchain projects both within ICO, and using a venture capital was seriously reduced, and results estimate 2 quarters 2019 at CB Insights as the lowest in the last two years.

For the first time in the history the real estate was sold through a blockchain system

In the middle of July, 2019 the first transaction on property sale by means of blockchain technology took place. She was imprisoned in Brazil. Read more here.

The companies, largest in South Korea, create a blockchain network for instant identification of people

In the middle of July, 2019 the technology, telecommunication companies and banks, largest in South Korea, created consortium for creation new a blockchain network as a basis for new service of mobile authentication. Consortium members of steel of Samsung Electronics, local telecom operators of SK Telecom, KT and LG Uplus, KEB Hana Bank and Woori Bank and also Koscom (IT service provider for the Korean exchange). Read more here.

Registration of all lease agreements of housing on Malta was transferred to a blockchain

At the end of June, 2019 it became known of transfer of registration of all lease agreements of housing on Malta in a blockchain system. She guarantees safety of information in an invariable type and provides only an authorized access to it. Read more here.

JPMorgan most in the financial sector employs blockchain specialists

By the end of March, 2019 it turned out that the largest bank USA JPMorgan employs more specialists in the field of blockchain technologies, than any other financial company on Wall Street. Results of the research conducted on the portal of vacancies Indeed.com during the period from February, 2018 to February of the 2019th demonstrate to it.

In the top ten of the companies which placed vacancies with a key word "blockchain", "cryptocurrency" or "bitcoin", JPMorgan it was the exclusive representative of the financial sector. In general financial and banking institutions practically do not open vacancies in this segment. Since 2016 the quantity of the vacancies connected with cryptocurrencies and blockchain technologies increased by 4,086%, and the amount of requests in these directions increased by 553%. At the same time from February, 2018 to February, 2019 the quantity of the jobs connected with blockchain technologies was reduced by 67% - interest in them fell with falling of a rate of cryptocurrencies.

JPMorgan employs more specialists in the field of blockchain technologies, than any other bank
JPMorgan employs more specialists in the field of blockchain technologies, than any other bank

Nevertheless, JPMorgan is still interested in use of a blockchain. In October, 2018 JPMorgan announced start of Quorum, own corporate blockchain platform on the basis of Ethereum. Later, in February, 2019, the JPMorgan company provided the JPM cryptocurrency which was developed for instant transactions between clients in payment network JPMorgan Chase. Besides, the company knows and appreciates advantages of the technology of the distributed registers allowing to reduce the cost of transactions and to increase their efficiency.

It is more than specialists in the field of a blockchain, than JPMorgan, employ the technology companies, such as IBM and Cisco and also consulting Accenture, EY and KPMG. In top-10 Microsoft, ConsenSys and little-known company Conduent developing platforms for large corporations and state structures also entered. The leader top-10 on number of the vacancies connected with blockchain technologies is Deloitte.[10]

IMF: rapid development of a blockchain and cryptocurrencies threatens economy of Malta

In January, 2019 the International Monetary Fund (IMF) issued the report in which reported that development of blockchain technology on Malta created "significant risks" regarding money muling and financing of terrorism. Read more here.

2018

Demand for a blockchain programmers flew up for 517%

At the end of February, 2019 the Hired service allowing applicants of work to find vacancies and to respond to proposals of employers announced huge splash in interest of the companies in programmers with experience of development of blockchain technologies. Read more here.

Salaries a specialists blockchain fly up to heaven after salaries of developer AI

Against the background of high demand a blockchain engineers and programmers with knowledge of cryptography of salary of such specialists fly up to heaven after salaries of developer AI, reported in recruiting company Hired in October, 2018.

According to service, average annual earnings the blockchain engineers reached $150-175 thousand. Approximately at the same level also the salaries of developers of the systems of artificial intelligence fluctuate. What is characteristic, normal software engineers earn is much more ferial - on average within $135 thousand a year, Hired claims, relying on own statistics.

Average annual earnings a blockchain engineers reached $150-175 thousand by October, 2018
Average annual earnings a blockchain engineers reached $150-175 thousand by October, 2018

Demand for professionals in the area a blockchain grew because more and more companies start projects in this sphere. As of October 22, 2018 the leading IT corporations, such as Facebook, Amazon, IBM and Microsoft have open vacancies connected about a blockchain.

The Hired service added a position a blockchain engineer to the list of the covered professions at the end of 2017. Since then the number of declarations from the employers who are looking for specialists in this profile increased by 400 times.

Commenting on digits, the chief executive of Hired Mehul Patel noted that in the market there are not enough software engineers, and in a segment a blockchain deficit is felt much more sharply, as provokes the prompt wages rise.

"When the name of my position was replaced with "the main blockchain engineer", offers began to arrive incessantly. Does not pass also day that I did not receive interview invitation in LinkedIn" — Dustin Welden who since March, 2018 passed into the Seattle company Globys for work on the project using advanced technology for providing different accounting services told CNBC.

According to the agency, for work a blockchain engineer skills in the field of network technologies, design of databases and cryptography are necessary. Also specialists should know different programming languages, such as Java, JavaScript, C ++, Go, Solidity and Python.[11]

Spain creates a blockchain control system behind wood supply

In September, 2018 it became known of development by the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food of Spain of blockchain technology for development of the national forest industry. Read more here.

Blockchain in the field of tourism: expectations and perspectives

According to the research "Cycle of a Maturity of Gartner Technologies" published in 2017, the blockchain is at peak of the overestimated expectations. Whether this is true for a travel industry? Business architects of Travelport analyzed possibilities of application a blockchain as for business of the company, and the industry in general.

Travelport found out whether there is a place to a blockchain in the field of tourism
Travelport found out whether there is a place to a blockchain in the field of tourism

As note in Travelport, the sphere of tourism in many respects is based on trust to business partners and successfully copes with different difficulties thanks to strong relationship. Therefore in the company asked a question: whether there is a place for blockchain technology here? To answer it, specialists of Travelport analyzed applications a blockchain for customer acquisition and safe dissemination and sale of tourist data. Also they considered other possibilities of use of technology in a travel industry.

Spheres of possible application of blockchain technologies

Scope of application A possibility of use of blockchain technology or a distributed database and the accompanying restrictions - class=odd A trip in general, armoringsNow public blockchains for this sphere are unsuitable, the limiting factors are the scalability and speed of check of transactions. - class=even Identification of the personalityBlockchain technologies and distributed databases can be applicable, however the reliable access control mechanism and model of security are required. - class=even Carrying out paymentsIs possible use a blockchain, at the same time financial partners and stability of currency are required. - class=even Exchange of potential clients, services, contentA blockchain can be probably used, at the same time interaction of suppliers of tourist services and the agreement on the exchange mechanism is required. - class=even A guarantee of armoring and paymentThe booking confirmation in a distributed database and use a blockchain as storage of all data on armoring is not provided in the database is possible. - class=even Sales of ticketsSimilar to the above, but are available the risks connected with transfer of former process to technology of a distributed database. - class=even Calculations between the companiesUse of a distributed database in the closed business network is possible. - class=even Purchases and accountingAccounting based on a distributed database is possible, however probably only in groups with limited access or in the closed network because of difficulties with performance and scalability. - class=even Exchange of tourist dataIs a possibility of exchange of tourist tokens or currency exchange, work with databases of several suppliers. Possibly, there will be a need of support of some other models of interaction. - class=even
' ' Data of Travelport
' '

According to the forecast of Travelport in the short term the majority of new products based on blockchain technology will appear in the closed supplier groups. They will be connected with private or controlled blockchains for the sphere of tourism. In the average and long term of blockchain technology or distributed databases can change radically the sphere of payment processing, accounting and order management.

«
We allow implementation a blockchain for management of a travel in general, calculations for air flights and a combination of runs of different airlines in the long term, and we expect further development of technology in these areas. Improvement of open standards a blockchain in a travel industry and readiness of turgagent to offer and sell content using distributed databases will become a factor of further development in these spheres, - Gavin Til, the managing director of Travelport in countries of Eastern Europe considers.
»

However the main influence of blockchain technologies and distributed databases will be expressed in decrease in time of processing and increase in efficiency of all processes where several parties should transfer each other and approve identical data. As an example it is possible to call drawing of accounts, settlement, money transfers, contract negotiation and identification of the personality. Now clients of Travelport solve many of these tasks manually with a set of checks and validations. The distributed database protected by a blockchain will allow all parties to have only the right version of data in real time, having eliminated many existing verification processes.

Specialists of Travelport also defined blockchain perspectives in the field of tourism in short-term, medium-term and long-term perspectives.

Blockchain perspectives in the field of tourism

Short-term outlook Medium term Long-term outlook - class=odd align= of Center style= "background:#000000;color:white;" 1–2 years2–5 years5 years and more - class=even Single payments between the companiesExchange of tourist cryptocurrencyRelease IATA койна for calculations for air flights - class=even Tourist cryptocurrency / tokensArmoring using a private distributed databaseA travel in general - class=even Basic identification of the personalityCryptocurrency payments for tripsCommunication between blockchains - class=even A private controlled distributed database for accounting at suppliersThe first implementation IATA койна for payment of air flights and settlementGlobal identification of the personality - class=even General access for suppliers to identification data of the personality - class=even
' ' Data of Travelport
' '

PwC predicted to China transformation into a blockchain power

At the end of August, 2018 the consulting company PwC published results of a research of the market of blockchain technologies and their application. Within the research in 15 territories asked 600 heads whether they apply a blockchain and in what see its potential. On survey results PwC predicted to China transformation into a blockchain power. Read more here.

Use of a blockchain in Associated Press for catching of plagiarists

At the end of August, 2018 it became known that the Associated Press news agency began to use a blockchain for fight against plagiarists. Cooperation with Civil Media startup was for this purpose begun. Read more here.

As Malta became the capital of a blockchain

In July, 2018 Malta opened doors for cryptocurrencies and technologies of the distributed register, aiming to turn the island state into the capital of a blockchain. The parliament of Malta adopted three bills designed to set a regulatory framework of use of blockchain technologies and to stimulate their development and financing. Read more here.

The European Union created partnership for development a blockchain

More than 20 states of the European Union signed in April 9, 2018 the declaration on creation of the European partnership in the field of blockchain technologies, reported[12] in the press service of European Commission[13].

"For the purpose of use of opportunities of blockchain technologies and in order to avoid fragmentary approach, participants of this declaration agree to cooperate in creation of the European partnership for development a blockchain infrastructure which will help to improve the digital services causing trust and focused on the user within the uniform market", reported in the declaration.

All project participants – 22 EU countries, will exchange knowledge and experience in the technical and normative sphere. Also, specialists will prepare start of applications, uniform for the European Union, using technology of the distributed registers for the state and private sectors – Prime agency reports.

On an agreement result, the initial cross-border shares should take place at the end of 2019. Earlier it was reported that the European Commission invests about 300 million euros in development a blockchain of technologies.

IBM urges the governments to use a blockchain

In February, 2018 the IBM company announced that it sees in a blockchain huge potential – and not only concerning cryptocurrencies. Now the company wishes to convince the governments that use of a blockchain will reduce risk and also costs of time and means in many areas of production and services.

IBM — one of the suppliers offering a blockchain as service which allows the enterprises to use this technology without considerable costs for development and the equipment.

Interest of the leadership of the USA in a blockchain is profitable first of all IBM. The company is in the extending list of those who offer a blockchain as service
Interest of the leadership of the USA in a blockchain is profitable first of all IBM. The company is in the extending list of those who offer a blockchain as service

The representative of IBM Jerry Cuomo said that blockchain technology which is capable to change the future. The company participates in development more than the 400th blockchain projects within the different industries, including financial services and health care. The USA – one of the leading countries in the field of development of a blockchain, and Cuomo urges the government to use this advantage to promotion and implementation of technology.

For example, Congressional Blockchain Caucus started in 2016 works on collection of information about a blockchain projects. These data are necessary that in the future people could confirm safely in network the personality, carry out online payments (for example, tax) and to trace supply chains.

The analyst Csilla Zsigri explained that use of a blockchain has the advantages to the government – this technology facilitates process of digitization of documentation and access to public services. Zsigri noted that Estonia already uses a blockchain in the e-Estonia program which allows to vote, keep medical documentation and to pay taxes online. The technology of a blockchain allows Estonia to save up to 2% of GDP a year. The government of Dubai together with IBM and ConsenSys works on a pilot project which will cover the whole country. According to plans of the companies, this project will simplify verification of identification data and will allow to digitize and monitor medical records, wills and different contracts.

Cuomo also warned that the government should not concentrate on use of a blockchain only in regulation of the unstable cryptocurrency market. The representative of IBM considers that cryptocurrencies do not realize all potential of this technology. Those who wishes to seize the cryptocurrency market should estimate and whenever possible to avoid "unforeseen effects which can prevent further development of a blockchain", he noted.

Recently the USA, China and other countries consider more practical approach to cryptocurrencies. The authorities consider that digital "gold-rush" requires control. The concern grows in economic circles that the cryptocurrency can pose a threat for a global financial system due to speculation and unsecured loans. Cuomo explained that IBM already works with Management on control of food and medicines of the USA (FDA) and the Center of prevention of diseases over possible use of a blockchain in this sphere.

«
The blockchain changes rules of the game. Thanks to this network of the company cannot work separately. In the center of any blockchain there is the general book of accounting, and each of members of network owns its exact copy — Cuomo says. — Thus, all participants have the updated book of accounting to which it is impossible to make corrections without the knowledge of other participants of network.
»

According to Cuomo. that the blockchain could implement completely the potential, it should be open and work on unlicensed technology with full functional compatibility. The blockchain helps to save time on negotiations, reduces finance costs, excepting a chain of intermediaries between the producer and the consumer and also reduces risk for both thanks to full open control. It opens incalculable opportunities for use of a blockchain.

«
The blockchain is ready to appear before the government — Cuomo continues. — It was necessary only to prepare the government for implementation of a blockchain.[14]
»

Use for monitoring of supply of cobalt

In February, 2018 it became known that the blockchain began to be used for the first time for monitoring of supply of cobalt from mines of the Democratic Republic of the Congo to the end products which are applied in production of smartphones and electric vehicles.

The sources of Reuters agency having access to the pilot project report that they as a result of implementation of development of the company will have an opportunity to monitor delivery of cobalt for production of Li-ion batteries that children were not engaged in extraction of metal.

Tracking of supply of cobalt puts before producers a set of problems as requires monitoring of quite large number of mines and accounting of all intermediate players in a supply chain. At the same time data should be collected from the remote regions of the poor countries with the high level of crime.

The woman separates cobalt from dirt and stones near the mine in Congo
The woman separates cobalt from dirt and stones near the mine in Congo

Besides, the companies are under the growing pressure from consumers and investors who demand proofs that by supply of the cobalt used by producers human rights were not violated. Large Chinese producers (the main consumers of the cobalt arriving from mines of Congo) whom such IT giant, like Apple and Samsung joined dealt with a problem of child labor at extraction of cobalt.

The blockchain is already used for monitoring of digital fingerprints of diamonds from mines of Africa, however to monitor delivery of cobalt much more difficult. However, authors of an initiative hope to cover at the first stage at least those stages of deliveries at which violation of the law is most probable.

The representative of the committee dealing with this problem explained to the agency that production of cobalt has significant economical and political value and, as a rule, limits use of normal technological solutions, however the blockchain can change a situation to the best.

By the beginning of February, 2018 a blockchain system, intended for monitoring of supply of cobalt from mines to end products, apply in the pilot mode. Full start will take place during the 2018th.[15]

2017

The Fujitsu platform integrates different blockchains for exchange of cryptocurrencies

In November, 2017 the Fujitsu company announced the technology integrating different solution blockchains for implementation of exchange transactions and payments within different cryptocurrencies. ConnectionChain represents expansion of technology of smart contracts which allows to interact different a blockchain-sistmam, writing the connected transactions in each chain on a separate blockchain, or "the connecting chain", integrating process of a currency exchange in uniform transaction which can be automated. Read more here.

Blockchain as instrument of control of marijuana turnover

At the beginning of November, 2017 the IBM corporation suggested the authorities of the Canadian province to use British Columbia blockchain technology for the organization of legal trade in marijuana. Read more here.

IBM develops the project of transfer of medical data through a blockchain

In October, 2017 the network of the American state centers for control and prevention of diseases (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, CDC) signed the agreement with IBM Watson Health on carrying out researches on application of blockchain technology for storage and exchange of medical data, reported the CoinDesk.com portal.

IBM and network of the centers for control and prevention of diseases create blockchain technology for exchange of medical data
IBM and network of the centers for control and prevention of diseases create blockchain technology for exchange of medical data

As the director of scientific research of IBM Shahram Ebadollahi told, the agreement became continuation of the joint study program of IBM operating since the beginning of 2017 with Management on sanitary inspection behind product quality and medicines of the USA (FDA). Within the above-stated program testing of a blockchain platform which will allow to optimize distribution of electronic medical records, results of clinical trials and information on the state of health of the patients who are brought together from portable devices is performed.

«
The blockchain is very useful when in a system there are a lot of characters. It allows an ecosystem of data to be in health care more mobile, and the artificial intelligence allows us to take information from these data. All speak about big data in health care, but I believe that long data is more important — Shakhram Ebadulai says.
»

According to him, use of artificial intelligence in health care will allow consumers to purchase the house medical systems as easily as house security systems.

The innovative information technologies are not alien to CDC: this organization which is division of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and responsible for prevention and response to the outbreaks of diseases at one of technology exhibitions showed technologies of search of effective collecting of crucial data during crisis situations.[16]

Most actively SBI, Google and Overstock.com invest in a blockchain

The largest world corporations allocate the fixed investment assets in development a blockchain mechanisms and technology tools for payment services and in improvement of a system of transactions in financial market, said in the report[17][18].

According to the statistics, the five of the most active investors included two bank giants – Citi and Goldman Sachs, the American online retailer Overstock.com, Google corporation and the Japanese financial holding SBI Group who headed rating. The holding finances the 8th unique a blockchain projects, including a payment service of Ripple Labs and also the cryptocurrency exchange Kraken.

"Under a wing" Google experts counted six a blockchain projects, the most known of them – Storj data warehouse, the financial LedgerX platform and the solution for Veem online retail.

According to analysts, for incomplete 2017 the blockchain received $4.12 billion from which $2.9 billion are attracted through ICO.

Australia will develop standards for a blockchain

International Organization for Standardization (ISO — International Organization of Standardization) decided that the international technical committee on questions of development of standards for blockchain technology (ISO/TC307) will be headed by Australia[19].

It is entrusted to committee to develop effective solutions according to standards for assistance of functional compatibility of systems, confidentiality, risks and also to set determination of security and terminology a blockchain.

The association of Australia on standardization submitted "The road map on a blockchain standards" where published technology of creation of standards for a blockchain.

In the document results of the conducted research in which 100 respondents from governmental bodies, the industries, the scientific sphere, the research and consumer organizations participated are also stated. Those noted that they are attracted by a possibility of use by the government of a blockchain for maintaining registers in questions of the rights to property, medical documentation and identification of the personality.

It is planned that in further Great Britain, the USA, France, Canada, Korea and Estonia will join development of standards for blockchain technology.

Cisco creates alliance for development of a blockchain for Internet of Things

At the end of January, 2017 it became known of creation of new blockchain consortium which problems include increase in security and improvement of use of Internet of Things (Internet of Things, IoT).

The organization which name was not announced included Cisco, Bosch, Foxconn, Gemalto, BNY Mellon bank and also a blockchain startups of Consensus Systems, BitSE and Chronicled. Joint efforts of the company will draft on the basis of blockchain technology the protocol of safe information exchange between various IoT-devices (washers, the transported containers, sensors, etc.), Reuters reports.

Cisco creates blockchain consortium which tasks include increase in security and improvement of use of Internet of Things
Cisco creates blockchain consortium which tasks include increase in security and improvement of use of Internet of Things

As more and more types of devices get access to the World Wide Web, the risk of cracking of such equipment increases. Participants of new consortium integrated to secure Internet interaction of IoT-products.

«
The blockchain is capable to increase stability and efficiency in the world connected to the Internet. Today there is no solution which would give the reliable guarantees protected from cracking for any legal documents, public information, the dispute resolution and transactions on the basis of paper documentation which is used now — the head of department reported a blockchain developments of BNY Mellon Alex Batlin.
»

«
We see huge potential in use of a blockchain in the industrial purposes — the head of Bosch Software Innovations Dirk Slama says. — We pursue a crucial task of creation of the protected register of information on how products are made, transported and supported in complex networks by many concerned parties. It is necessary, for example, for high-quality providing products and protection against counterfeits.[20]
»

2016

Thanks to a blockchain airlines are going to save on banks up to $1 billion a year

In December, 2016 the International Air Transport Association of IATA started a pilot project on blockchain technology. Using calculations on a blockchain of airline, entering into IATA, expect to save on service of banks and services of international payment systems up to $1 billion a year. In more detail - in the separate article.

IBM creates a blockchain ecosystem

In December, 2016 the IBM corporation announced a blockchain ecosystem creation. The IT giant is ready to provide to everyone tools and the training materials for development of the corporate software using a blockchain.

The ecosystem of IBM will provide support to the startups which are engaged in creation of blockchains-applications. They will be able to place the products in special shop IBM Marketplace.

IBM provides to everyone tools and the training materials for creation of blockchains-applications of the corporate level
IBM provides to everyone tools and the training materials for creation of blockchains-applications of the corporate level

Software developers and system integrators can join an ecosystem of IBM, having got access to tools (including to the code of libraries, templates of "smart" contracts, etc.), to educational rates and community. The company intends to hold the training events and to give support to developers via the official Slack-channel of the Hyperledger Fabric project.

«
IBM will provide training and tools for reduction of time necessary for transition from the idea to the embodiment, says corporation.
»

According to the senior vice president for the industrial IBM platforms Bridget Van Kralingen, future development of a blockchain will depend on a strong ecosystem. Corporate networks will be able to reach critical mass only when developers of the innovative technologies, industrial experts and suppliers of infrastructure integrate for reconsideration of business transactions, she considers.

Within development the blockchain community of IBM provides the service allowing clients to test the blockchain projects in a safe cloud and to trace the goods with high cost following through a difficult supply chain. This service is already used by Everledger company which applies blockchain technology to ensuring transparency by supply of diamonds and the problem solving of the market connected with use of a slave labor and financing of violence in Africa.[21]

IBM and Mahindra create a solution blockchain for financial logistics

On December 8, 2016 the Indian corporation Mahindra Group and the American IBM announced creation a solution blockchain for financial logistics. Developers of technology hope that it will increase security, transparency and quality of operational processes in a supply chain. Read more here.

Numbrix creates blockchain-consortium

The financial technical-startup of Nimbrix signed in November, 2016 the partnership agreement with KPMG and Microsoft for the purpose of creation of blockchain-consortium for asset management.

Nimbrix offers the market the platform of the next generation for the investment management. In it advantages of Microsoft Azure, block chains and open Application Programming Interface (API) - interfaces are implemented that allows to avoid the problems connected with the outdated fragmented systems which are usually used on the party of the buyer[22].

Representatives of the company assure that authorized users without effort will be able to share data of Nimbrix, to supplement and analyze them. At the same time transactions between partners can be executed almost instantly that reduces risk of emergence of errors and non-execution of the transaction.

"It is more, than just a product, – the CEO of Nimbrix Simon Bullers emphasizes. – It is revolutionary approach to the software for the sector of financial services. To deploy traditional solutions for this industry and to perform transition to them, years are necessary, and you can implement the Nimbrix platform within several minutes, and then pass completely to it for only several months. At the same time, as this software is provided in the SaaS format based on Microsoft Azure, the companies will be able to avoid need of huge preliminary capital investments".

Visa creates the competitor of SWIFT on the basis of blockchain

Together with a blockchain startup of Chain, Visa works on the system of the interbank and corporate large remittances made practically in real time.

The purpose of the pilot project of Visa B2B Connect planned by a card system for 2017 is improvement of payments of B2B by means of system implementation which in real time should provide the direction of notifications and an extremity of payments within the immutable system of the permitted personal records [23].

Having begun this development, Visa becomes the competitor of a system of interbank transfers of SWIFT and other new applicants for leadership, such as Ripple Labs.

  • The company works with Chain, the player in the field of use of a blockchain in financial space. The startup attracted financing of over 40 million dollars USA from Khosla Ventures, RRE Ventures and strategic partners, including Capital One, Citigroup, Fiserv, Nasdaq, Orange and Visa. Chain works with the interested investors over different scenarios of use of technology for the subsequent deployment in financial markets, first of all with Nasdaq in security market of private companies (Nasdaq Private Market), for the purposes of proxy vote and clearing.

  • Visa not for the first time experiments from blockchain technologies. In September, 2015 the division of the company performed two-month verification of the concept (Proof Of Concept) in cooperation with Epiphyte by means of simulation of real cash transactions using technology of the distributed registers.
  • In September, 2016 Visa Europe together with the division of BTL which is based in Vancouver started the pilot project on application of blockchain technology in the field of local and cross-border payments.

The first cross-border commercial transaction by means of a blockchain

On October 24, 2016 it became known of commission of the first cross-border commercial transaction by banks using blockchain technology. The Reuters news agency reports about it.

The Australian financial conglomerate Commonwealth Bank of Australia (CBA), selling company of Brighann Cotton Marketing Australia cotton and the American bank Wells Fargo took part in the transaction on supply of cotton from the United States to China, using trade and banking activities within a blockchain system. With its help 88 packagings of goods for the total amount of $35 thousand were shipped.

CBA noted that the blockchain provided transparency of the transaction between the buyer and the seller and also the high level of security and an opportunity to trace products delivery status in real time. Besides, failure from paper accounting for benefit of electronic based on the distributed register reduces quantity of errors and allows to reduce runtime of some transactions from several days to minutes.

Commonwealth Bank of Australia made the cross-border commercial transaction first in the history by means of a blockchain
Commonwealth Bank of Australia made the cross-border commercial transaction first in the history by means of a blockchain
«
The current processes of calculations for the international trade operations approached revolution. The tested method shows how the companies can derive benefit from these new technologies worldwide, - Michael Eidel, the executive general manager on services of support of transactions and cash flows of CBA said.
»

According to the head of services department of international trade of Wells Fargo Chris Lewis (Wells Fargo), the company aims to develop and support new technologies though "vital normative, legal and other issues still remain unresolved".

As Reuters, the transaction which was carried out by CBA, Brighann Cotton Marketing Australia and Wells Fargo notes, became not the first when the blockchain was used, but it marks an important milestone for the traditional bank industry because it is heavier and heavier to law enforcement agencies to trace cash flows.

Thanks to hands-off processing of transactions the blockchain is especially attractive to cross-border transactions which are often delayed because of duplication of work on payment processing and a difference of time zones.[24]

Bitcoins in a niche. Not a risk blockchain. SWIFT in a problem zone

According to the report of Credit Suisse, participants of the sector of payments of Visa, Mastercard, WorldPay and others, it is not necessary to worry: bitcoins will remain niche players, and the technology of block chains does not represent big risk.

Answering concern of investors concerning technology of block chains and its opportunities to destroy the traditional industries in the long term, Credit Suisse prepared the report in which integrated analysis results of influence of this technology on 14 companies working in different spheres - the industry of payments, the capital markets, financial services and media[25].

Bitcoin, (2015)
Bitcoin, (2015)

Authors of the report drew a conclusion - to bitcoin not easy will be to rise in a row the main forces, having designated 13 obstacles for its wide circulation. Unlike it, the distributed registers are considered as more powerful force having three main properties:

  • failure from the entrusted intermediaries,
  • integrity of records
  • smart contracts.

They give to this technology real advantages over the traditional systems.

The possibility of the permitted public registers - to save payment system from the central coordination center on behalf of Visa and Mastercard is reflected in the report. However, analysts of bank consider risks for these payment systems are very small, claiming that the solution of the structures similar to Apple - to appropriate tokenization process for control of the networks, does their position strong.

Concerns concerning such firms as WorldPay, are inappropriate, the report says, which estimates stocks of the company according to rating "above average market" while DH Corporation is given the same mark by a number of parameters as it the partner of Ripple also is ready to implementation a blockchain.

Financial technical-giant Fiserv (Fiserv) before bigger threat. Assigned it "neutral" score. According to authors of the report, "as applications based on a blockchain are developed around the main financial services, FISV can face the competition in bank technology space". By Fiserv it is insured from this threat, investing in Chain startup, along with Nasdaq, Visa, Citi and Capital One.

SWIFT can face problems, researchers noted. Slow and expensive SWIFT with systems, which age - decades. It is insufficiently flexible and faces the growing security risks that a recent attack to Bangladesh bank confirmed.

In the report the appeal to implementation of blockchain technology sounds: inexpensive, fast, almost not subject to cracking, completely automated end-to-end system of transactions created on the basis of permissions of individuals.

In the section of the report devoted to the capital markets it is told - a blockchain, it is rather an opportunity, than threat for the London Stock Exchange which received rating "above average market". However, the market "apparently, lost sight of risks" for some stock exchanges, including Australian Securities Exchange which tries to use this technology for elimination of the existing delays of the actual execution of financial transactions after biddings.

In the field of financial services of a position of Goldman Sachs are considered as favorable for use of advantages of a blockchain, thanks to direct investments of banking conglomerate in this technology. JPMorgan was also highly appreciated for determination to invest in technology of the distributed registers, both in the structure, and within partnership with startups.

Blockchain services based on IBM Cloud for financial institutions, the organizations of public sector and health sector

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