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Blockchain tourism being replaced by its application to business challenges

Deloitte reveals the next 12 months could see businesses move from exploring blockchain to applying it to business challenges

Global businesses are moving from a phase of exploring blockchain’s potential to applying the technology to real-life business challenges, according to a survey of business executives.

A survey of more than 1,000 executives at major global companies, carried out by Deloitte Consulting, found that while the application of blockchain in business is still limited, executives who have good technology knowledge are ready to change this.

Deloitte said global executives with “excellent” to “expert” knowledge of blockchain technology were “poised to make some major moves over the next year”.

Linda Pawczuk, principal at Deloitte Consulting, said momentum was shifting from “a focus on blockchain tourism and exploring the technology’s potential, to building practical business applications”.

“As more organisations put their resources behind this emerging technology, we expect blockchain to gain significant traction as its potential for greater efficiency, support for new business models and revenue sources, and enhanced security are demonstrated in real-world situations,” she said.

According to Deloitte, 74% of the executives surveyed said their company saw a compelling business case for the use of blockchain, and many said they were moving forward with the technology.

Half of this group said they already used blockchain in the live environment, and 41% of them planned to do so within the next year.

About 40% of the surveyed group expected to spend $5m or more on blockchain technology in the next 12 months.

Blockchain is being used in a variety of scenarios. Over half (53%) of those using blockchain said they were using it for supply chain-focused systems, 51% for internet of things (IoT) integration projects and over 40% in projects related to digital records.

But the survey found that 22% of global respondents still did not have a compelling reason to roll out blockchain in their business.

Read more about blockchain and its application

  • In this e-guide, read about how blockchain’s inherent security makes it tamper-proof and perfect for keeping and sharing records for transactions in many scenarios.
  • Dubai government is introducing a biometric border checking system that uses blockchain to ensure sensitive data can only be seen by the digital passport holder and the relevant authorities.
  • Artificial intelligence and blockchain initiatives are earmarked for a doubling of investment, finds the Computer Weekly/TechTarget IT Priorities survey for 2018.
  • By reducing the cost of peer-to-peer data and resource transfer, blockchain can remove the need for third parties and middlemen across industries.

According to a recent Gartner survey, however, CIOs are even less emphatic about blockchain’s prospects. The analyst company found that only 1% of CIOs were running blockchain projects and only 8% were either planning to do so in the short term or experimenting with the technology now.

“This year’s Gartner CIO survey provides factual evidence about the massively hyped state of blockchain adoption and deployment,” said David Furlonger, vice-president and Gartner fellow.

“Rushing into blockchain deployments could lead organisations to significant problems of failed innovation, wasted investment, rash decisions and even rejection of a game-changing technology,” he added.

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