Key initiatives include teaming up with R3, a world-leading blockchain platform provider and FORMS HK, a pioneer of blockchain applications, to launch the “Block AdVenture Programme”. The programme provides technical training for start-ups, assisting them in developing blockchain technology solutions. In promoting its applications for enterprises, Cyberport has launched the “Blockchain & RegTech Speaker Series” between this August and October, where the financial industry was briefed on blockchain’s applications in digital assets, insurance and compliance. Next week, Cyberport will also co-organise “Hong Kong Blockchain Week 2020” with NexChange, to examine topical issues such as “decentralised finance” and blockchain applications for enterprises. Next-generation blockchain organisations are leading the way showing how the technology can be used intelligently for the world we live in today. Cyberport’s start-ups offer blockchain application solutions beyond the financial industry. That makes it difficult for different stakeholders to consolidate information, so verification becomes cumbersome.
We are seeing customers truly learning about the practical reasons to deploy, leading to more investment in time and money in blockchain. And despite being a relatively new company, TMT Blockchain’s proven experience, combined with a clear outlook that stems from an extremely professional team, promises to be an exciting development tool for blockchain and cryptocurrency-based start-ups around the world. At the tail end of 2017, TMT Investments unveiled the TMT Blockchain Fund, a new vehicle dedicated to investing in blockchain-orientated start-ups before they hold initial coin offerings . Worth some $60m (€51.9m), the investment fund offers cash in exchange for capital before any potential ICO. The fund was essentially inspired by a desire to embrace the new economy by incorporating the latest assets and mechanisms designed for growing wealth. iLaw’s Blockchain, Cryptocurrency Digital Assets practice encompasses commercial, regulatory and contentious issues. Our clients include leading cryptocurrency exchanges, start-ups, traders, investors and globally renowned developers of leading decentralised computing platforms and applications.
It should be noted however, especially with fraud cases that jurisdictional issues will need careful handling, including determining where the damage has been suffered. This was a case where the BitPaymer virus held files to ransom and when the ransom was paid by insurers, the insurers attempted to trace and recover the bitcoin ransom. In the application for injunctive relief the court looked again at the concept of property; traditionally recognised as a tangible thing in possession or thing in action which can be enforced e.g. a debt. The Court also looked to the guidance issued by the UK Jurisdictional Task Force and concluded that crypto assets can qualify as property, capable of ownership and definition and therefore granted the injunction.
This increase in visibility throughout the process will dramatically decrease the theft and hacking that plagues the industry. Inherent to blockchain technology is the ability to create a decentralized, encrypted ledger that logs all of the critical transport data. This log is immutable to hackers, as no one has the ability to change or delete crucial information. The company, which is part of BiTA, is building a fully integrated supply chain management system that gives insight into each stage of the logistics process. In addition, the company aims to create a decentralised brokerage system — essentially an open marketplace for shippers and carriers. Leveraging the transparency of information on the blockchain, the marketplace will let shippers optimise cost and time for every shipment. The lack of efficiency, transparency and security across the global networks is precisely the problem blockchain technology is designed to solve.
Accountants can also work as advisers to companies considering joining blockchains themselves, providing advice on weighing the costs and advantages of the new system. Accountants’ mix of business and financial nous will position them as key advisers to companies approaching these new technologies looking for opportunity. To become truly an integral part of the financial system, blockchain must be developed, standardised and optimised. This process is likely to take many years – it has already been nine years since bitcoin began operating and there is much work still to be done. There are many blockchain applications and start-ups in this field, but there are very few that are beyond the proof of concept or pilot study stage.
in Robertson v Persons Unknown (unreported – July 2019)the English Court considered the concept of bitcoin as property in an application for an injunction. In order to grant relief, the Court had to effectively recognise the cryptocurrency as something capable of being owned and it followed the lead of other jurisdictions in recognising that bitcoin could constitute personal property and therefore be subject to the relief sought.
UPS today announced a collaboration with HerdX, Inc., a leading U.S.-based agri-tech solutions provider, to deliver blockchain-verified traced beef from a U.S. farm to Japan. The delivery represents a significant step forward in quality assurance and traceability in the beef industry and was celebrated at an event attended by U.S. and Japanese embassy officials in Tokyo on Friday, Nov. 8, 2019. The range of start-ups include; software companies dealing with Big Data analytics, AI engagement streams, cross variety information, healthcare solutions and monitoring. The start-up ‘LiberEat’ will be aiming to make life easier for people with dietary requirements by showing them exactly what they and their family members can eat. While ‘Sentinel Biosensor’ will be working on medical grade, wearable, autonomous, vital signs monitors that can spot signs of deterioration in patients. ‘Welcome Week’ is the introductory agenda for the next batch of start-ups joining the programme.
Even so, established stakeholders will be slow to accept what is a revolutionary technology, says Marke. “Bureaucracies around the world have been working with centralised systems for the past century. The growing complexity of power management requires new solutions, of which blockchain is one. One way it does this is through “smart contracts”, which allow real-time pricing and make the grid more flexible. They automatically execute the terms specified in a contract on a blockchain as long as certain conditions have been met, increasing efficiency and reducing transaction costs. Blockchain also facilitates distributed energy generation by allowing consumers to buy and sell their own energy.
The Potential Of Blockchain
The timing of the £330,000 investment and expansion of the scope of IOV Labs Asia JV is “particularly favourable”, said Travia, given the “burgeoning growth and activity” in the cryptocurrency market, driven by fresh all-time-high prices. This comes at a time of incredible innovation and regulatory achievement in the cryptocurrency finance space. Since May the total value of DeFi contracts has exploded from less than $1bn to over $14bn. The joint venture, called IOV Labs Asia JV, plans to expand the scope of its activities from regional Asia to worldwide.
The move to a financial system with a significant blockchain element offers many opportunities for the accountancy profession. Accountants are seen as experts in record keeping, application of complex rules, business logic and standards setting. They have the opportunity to guide and influence how blockchain is embedded and used in the future, and to develop blockchain-led solutions and services. So why did blockchain adoption take so long compared to other new technologies such as cloud and AI? The slow adoption in highly regulated, complex markets such as the financial services industry shouldn’t come as a surprise. Blockchain is suited for complex, collaborative, multi-party, and critical application use-cases.
The technical strengths brought together in Bayes build on world-leading academic excellence in the mathematical, computational, engineering, and natural sciences in the University’s College of Science and Engineering. Telefónica is a 100% listed company and its shares are traded on the Spanish Stock Market and on those in New York and Lima. The company has a significant presence in 14 countries and over 346 million accesses around the world. Telefónica has a strong presence in Spain, Europe and Latin America, where the company focuses an important part of its growth strategy.
- Cyberport incubatee MediConCen utilises blockchain to support medical insurance claims at insurance companies.
- And blockchain developer ConsenSys is working with WWF and Fiji tuna processor Sea Quest to test a traceability tool to help stamp out illegal fishing and human rights abuses in the Pacific Islands’ tuna industry.
- Cyberport’s start-ups also use blockchain to develop solutions for asset management and insurance.
- Leveraging the transparency of information on the blockchain, the marketplace will let shippers optimise cost and time for every shipment.
- This increases the security and transparency of all information that is stored on a blockchain across the life cycle of a transaction.
UPS customs brokers coordinated with health, food and safety regulators in both the U.S. and Japan to obtain all required certifications that made the delivery possible. Backed by more than 80 years of experience, UPS brokerage and transportation services promoted accurate customs compliance, timely clearance of goods and reduced risk of delays or penalties. Data sourced via UPS Temperature True monitoring devices was uploaded and integrated seamlessly within HerdX’s blockchain verification platform. The beef arrived via air freight to an urban contemporary steakhouse where invited guests were provided menu items featuring scannable QR codes containing tracking information detailing the journey of the beef they were to consume. Throughout the experience, a team of Telefónica experts provides personalised support adapted to the needs of each start-up, as well as additional training and networking services to get the most out of the programme. In addition, these start-ups can opt for the possibility of carrying out a pilot with Telefónica and its corporate customer portfolio, as well as being analysed to assess an investment opportunity by Wayra. With successful programmes run in 2018 and 2019, this year’s cohort will see ten new start-ups embark on the Accelerator journey supported by Wayra and the University of Edinburgh’s Bayes Innovation Centre.
The Ai & Blockchain Accelerator Opens Applications For 2020 Programme
Accountants are already participating in the research, but there is more for the profession to do. Crafting regulation and standards to cover blockchain will be no small challenge, and leading accountancy firms and bodies can bring their expertise to that work. Shippers and carriers are optimistic that advances in blockchain technology will support the industry’s growth for years to come. While the premise of blockchain is promising for an industry rife with inefficiency, the technology is still very much in its early days.
One effective way transparency and efficiency can be increased, for example, is by leveraging smart contracts, the core innovation behind the Ethereum blockchain. Smart contracts are essentially self-executing contracts that are fulfilled when predefined stipulations are met. This is particularly useful when it comes to increasing the efficiency of shipping escrow by removing or limiting the intermediaries involved, and therefore bypassing the markups they post. The freight and logistics industry incorporates a large number of brokers and significant amounts of hidden information across complex supply chains. Currently, the freight and logistics industry is heavily controlled by freight brokers, which exist to facilitate transactions of loads from shippers to carriers. This not only increases costs for carriers, it also leads to increases in downstream prices that directly affect consumers. Blockchain systems provide an unprecedented opportunity to transform logistics and supply chains, with huge benefits to business and customers.
In other words, those wishing to buy cryptocurrencies in South Korea lost their right to anonymity. In China, meanwhile, the People’s Bank of China banned local exchanges – including BTCC, Huobi and OKCoin – and effectively put a stop to all activities related to digital currencies, in accordance with anti-money laundering legislation. It is also worth noting that only one critical vulnerability has surfaced during almost nine years of operation – in 2010, someone hacked 92 billion bitcoins into existence. To fix the bug – a simple number overflow error – a ‘reset’ was instigated, cancelling all transactions that took place during the period.
From over 100 applicants around the world, 10 have been selected and now have the chance of benefiting from the incredible network offered by the partners to help scale their businesses. These judgemental elements often require context that is not available to the general public, but instead require knowledge of the business, and with blockchain in place, the auditor will have more time to focus on these questions. Performing confirmations of a company’s financial status would be less necessary if some or all of the transactions that underlie that status are visible on blockchains. It is concerned with the transfer of ownership of assets, and maintaining a ledger of accurate financial information. The accounting profession is broadly concerned with the measurement and communication of financial information, and the analysis of said information. Much of the profession is concerned with ascertaining or measuring rights and obligations over property, or planning how to best allocate financial resources. For accountants, using blockchain provides clarity over ownership of assets and existence of obligations, and could dramatically improve efficiency.
From Cookstoves To Carbon Markets: How Blockchain Is Supercharging Sustainability
For example, ‘Vennle’ uses big data analytics tools to optimise public transport networks, allowing them to visualise, forecast and optimise. Whereas ‘PolyDigi Tech’ are a next generation mobile security & blockchain solutions company. Powered by O2 Telefonica, Wayra Edinburgh is an AI and Blockchain accelerator programme for digital start-ups. In the long term, more and more records could move onto blockchains, and auditors and regulators with access would be able to check transactions in real time and with certainty over the provenance of those transactions. A rare talent Matthew’s recent work includes mentoring Lunar XPrize teams, re-envisioning global education and training with the G20, and helping the world’s largest organisations envision and ideate the future of their products and services, industries, and countries.
It digitalises physical and intangible assets, splits ownership so asset owners will find it easier to obtain financing. This allows more investors to invest with smaller sums and hold property rights proportionate to their investments in different types of projects like hotels and commercial buildings. For HKbitEX, which just became a Cyberport incubatee in October, it runs a digital asset over-the-counter trading platform for professional investors. Unilever has a pilot project investigating blockchain’s potential in its supply chain, according to the Climate Ledger Initiative. Working with a retail firm, a packaging firm and several banks, the consumer goods company is developing a system to track and reward tea suppliers for sustainable farming practices.
HerdX, Inc., founded by Ron Hicks, offers an end-to-end solution called the HerdX Livestock Ecosystem. It uses tags, water and data to support livestock producers, enhance animal health and wellbeing, and deliver clean, traceable food products to retailers and consumers. “UPS Freight Forwarding and Logistics services more than 220 countries and territories worldwide. Our official international logistics partnership gives HerdX unprecedented scaling power, which in turn provides incredible expansion opportunities for the American cattle producer,” said Hicks.
The Company’s CEO, Evangelos Papas, will pitch Ocyan on the 11th December at the Accelerator Demo Day at Mansfield Traquair, Edinburgh. Demo Day is like a “graduation” day for the start-ups and it marks the end of the programme.
Cyberport incubatee Block Aero built a blockchain platform for stakeholders like airlines and aircraft maintenance companies. Records of maintenance and repair work, as well as information on supply chains are listed clearly on the chains. Blockchain is a decentralised, transparent, tamper-proof and traceable technology that is particular suited to financial industry that demands high reliability and accuracy. Cyberport’s start-ups also use blockchain to develop solutions for asset management and insurance. Blockchain technology provides a new mode of transaction for fixed assets which lifts asset liquidity in a low-cost manner and simultaneously lowers the entry threshold for investors. Its first project was a premium hotel asset located in London’s central district of Mayfair. Liquefy is committed to expanding its market in the Middle East and has been awarded a license to operate a token asset trading platform.
In my mind, the most famous cryptocurrency, bitcoin, boasts technology that is nothing short of revolutionary. Although bitcoin has sometimes been used for criminal purposes, this does not take away from the role it has played in technological progress. Start-ups that previously fought for investors’ attention now earn millions of dollars issuing and selling cryptocurrencies through ICOs. According to research firm Smith and Crown, blockchain-orientated start-ups attracted over $1bn (€864.6m) through ICOs in the first half of 2017 – 10 times the value achieved in 2016.
PwC economist Alex de Vries estimates that generating bitcoin uses 2.55 gigawatts of energy a year, almost as much as the Republic of Ireland. Miners use this energy by running computers to solve complex codes, known as a proof of work, to earn the currency. To limit the amount of currency in circulation, these proofs of work are becoming more complicated over time, requiring ever more computing and electrical power. In addition, many miners are in China, and use electricity produced by coal-fired power stations, the most polluting form of energy. Blockchain, also known as distributed ledger technology , is the enabling force behind cryptocurrencies such as bitcoin. One of the main things people know about cryptocurrencies is that it takes huge amounts of energy to “mine” the coins. Telefónica is one of the largest telecommunications companies in the world by market capitalization and number of customers with a comprehensive offering and quality of connectivity that is delivered over world class fixed, mobile and broadband networks.
Despite the gravity of the hack, the fact there has only been one such incident to date is impressive. Blockchain has seen different levels of success across industries and attendees can expect to gain insight into luxury good related areas including supply chain management and counterfeit prevention. the interactive webinar will brief delegates on how the technology is developing and provide practical advice on its uses in the luxury sector. Blockchain experts will join partners from Bird & Bird to debate the technology’s growing role in the luxury sector at a web seminar next Wednesday. As one of the co-founding firms of ICLA iLaw has excellent connections with many firms in leading jurisdictions in the blockchain and crypto world.