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Blockchain has reached a "point of inflection"? Weighing Execs

Now that the blockchain's exaggeration is over, what do world-wide managers of distributed registry technology really think that it promises to turn everything from ingredient tracking to banking?

To find out, the researchers of Deloitte recently interviewed 1,053 executives from seven countries (Canada, China, France, Germany, Mexico, United Kingdom and United States) who are familiar with blockchain and plans blockchain investment of their companies. All respondents represent companies with at least $ 500 million in annual revenue.

Key results? While 44% of executives believe that the blockchain is oversized – an increase from 34% in 2016 – the 84% also thinks that blockchain technology is "widely scalable and will eventually reach traditional adoption". In addition, three quarters of respondents report that their executive team sees a "compelling business case" for the use of blockchain and 68% say their competitive advantage is on the line.

This supports the statement of the authors of the report that "blockchain is at an inflection point, with the" blockchain tourism "momentum and exploration for the construction of practical business applications."

Sixty-five percent of the Interviewees say their organizations plan to invest $ 1 million or more in blockchain technology in the coming year, with 16% planning to invest at least $ 10 million. There is no significant geographical variation when it comes to blockchain investments, although companies based in Canada and the United States are more likely to have no immediate investment in scheduled blockchains.

Respondents are attracted to the blockchain for the increased speed promised by the real-time information exchange capacity, as well as the possibility of new business models and revenue sources. Safety is yet another important factor. The vast majority (84%) of executives surveyed believe that a blockchain-based solution would be safer.

Respondents working in the automotive sector (73%), oil and gas (72%) and biotechnology, medical devices and pharmaceuticals (72%) are more likely to agree with the statement that their sector will be interrupted by the blockchain, while respondents in the public sector (46%) and food (50%) are less likely. Overall, three out of five respondents believe that the disruptive potential of blockchain applies to their sector.

Although 43% of respondents say their organizations consider blockchain to be one of their top five strategic priorities, there is a long list of obstacles to more technology investments. As the table below shows, regulatory issues, implementation and security are some of the most common.

Source: Deloitte

Perhaps because of these shared concerns, organizations are very open to participate in a blockchain consortium with competitors to learn more and develop blockchain applications. 29% of respondents say their organizations already participate in this consortium, while another 45% say they are "likely to join one".

The report's authors point out that companies "still see blockchain as technology – prioritize rather than corporate." After all, the survey shows that blockchain efforts tend to be led by IT (39%) o from innovation or from research and development functions (15%). Another 39% of respondents report that the company as a whole is driving blockchain efforts.

When it comes to blockchain models, 52% focus on authorized blockchain, 44% on private blockchain inside the company and 44% on public blockchains like bitcoin or ethereum. (It is worth noting here that the survey allows respondents to choose more than one answer.)

Source: Deloitte

As the graph above shows, the most popular blockchain use case concerns the supply chain. In fact, suppliers are external stakeholders who will most likely ask themselves about the blockchain strategy of a company, according to the survey, taking a stronger interest from customers, market analysts or partners.

Concluding on an optimistic note – or perhaps overly optimistic -, the executives who took part in the survey tend to be very confident in their understanding of the blockchain, with 87% of those working in the industry oil and gas companies claiming to have an "excellent" or "expert" understanding. On the contrary, those in the public sector are perhaps more realistic, with only about half of those interviewed who proclaim this competence.

The full report, "Breaking Blockchain Open: 2011 Global Blockchain Survey of Deloitte", can be found here .

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