IBM has proven its ability to develop practical blockchain solutions, and it now seems intent to add further value in this space by playing an advisory role.
On Friday, the company launched its Blockchain Founder Accelerator, a program designed to help companies trying to implement blockchain technology solutions within their business. In particular, it will help enterprises using Hyperledger Composer, a tool for building blockchain business networks developed by the Hyperledger Project, which IBM is involved in.
The program will offer eight companies selected by IBM — across industries including banking, retail, and logistics — benefits such as mentorship, advice on technology development and legal issues, early access to IBM’s new blockchain solutions, workshops, marketing assistance, and onboarding tools. Given that many enterprises likely don’t understand blockchain technology well enough to implement it on their own, the Accelerator will probably have many applicants. This will likely boost the company’s reputation as a blockchain technology expert and cement its leadership position even further.
Nearly every global bank is experimenting with blockchain technology as they try to unleash the cost savings and operational efficiencies it promises to deliver.
Banks are exploring the technology in a number of ways, including through partnerships with fintechs, membership in global consortia, and via the building of their own in-house solutions.
Sarah Kocianski, senior research analyst for BI Intelligence, Business Insider’s premium research service, has compiled a detailed report on blockchain in banking that outlines why and in what ways banks are exploring blockchain technology, provides details on three major banks’ blockchain efforts based on in-depth interviews, and highlights other notable blockchain-based experiments underway by global banks. It also discusses the likely trends that will emerge in the technology over the next several years, and the factors that will be critical to the success of banks implementing blockchain-based solutions.
Here are some of the key takeaways from the report:
- Most banks are exploring the use of blockchain technology in order to streamline processes and cut costs. However, they are also looking to leverage additional advantages, including increased competitiveness with fintechs, and the ability to use the technology to create new business models.
- Banks are starting to narrow their focus, and are increasingly honing in on tangible use cases for blockchain technology that solve real problems faced by their businesses.
- Regulators are taking an increased interest in blockchain technology, and they’re working alongside major banks to develop regulatory frameworks.
- Blockchain-based solutions will start to emerge in different areas of financial services. The most successful solutions will solve specific problems for banks and attract a large enough network to create widespread benefits.
In full, the report:
- Outlines banks’ experiments with blockchain technology.
- Details blockchain projects at three major banks — UBS, Credit Suisse, and Banco Santander — based on in-depth interviews.
- Discusses the likely trends that will emerge in the technology over the next several years.
- Highlights the factors that will be critical to the success of banks implementing blockchain-based solutions.
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