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What investors should be careful to find a blockchain unicorn

The price of Kodak shares rose by 89% after launching Kodak One as a cryptocurrency using blockchain. Photo: Reuters

The price of Kodak shares rose by 89% after launching Kodak One as a cryptocurrency using blockchain. Photo: Reuters

Remember a decade ago when the IT entrepreneurs of India attracted both brides and ratings? Does the blockchain go down the same corridor?

Kodak recently launched Kodak One as a cryptocurrency using blockchain technology to protect the copyright of photographs and images recorded on its platform.

Its share price rose by 89%.

Should we be worried about the foam? No, because it risks diverting attention from the disruptive technology that powers cryptography today and potentially our world tomorrow.

Under the foam there is the strength of the blockchain to change the way we live, work, connect and process, and this attracts technology communities in Silicon Valley, London and India.

This is the fundamental premise of blockchain: it is the technology behind a distributed computer network that can be used to store data securely but which, univocally, has a unique memory. This means that data can not be copied to sell the same resource again. Imagine duplicating the actions of your home and selling it again, fairly common in India. This risk also remained with the transition from printed paper to a digital file. Blockchain removes this risk. This is why blockchain technologists refer to it as the "platform of trust".

As an investor, how can I find the unicorn blockchain? First of all, it is clear that blockchain is particularly suitable for applications such as supply chains.

A second challenge for blockchain is accelerating the speed at which data can be loaded and verified, which at each iteration adds a new block to the chain. The faster it is, the greater the number of real-world applications that can go up on a blockchain architecture. Blockchain and fintech are often synonymous, but imagine waiting 10 minutes to approve a financial transaction while the blockchain checks your credentials. Blockchain upload speeds must be increased to realize its full potential.

Blockchain developers are scarce and a third challenge is to maintain the best talent in the face of the temptations of Silicon Valley and China. A blockchain startup needs to work overtime to hire, recruit and retain its valued engineers. India could be the answer with its more mature ecosystem of engineers.

Finally, the blockchain spots are really becoming fiery. The main buyers of key technologies will be companies, but most are in an early stage of adoption. The optimist in me refers to a PwC survey that found that four fifths of the 600 CEOs interviewed on fintech, retail, media and energy said they were actively looking for blockchain solutions for their business services, processes or supply chain.

Walmart has recently tested the blockchain in its food supply chains while IBM is implementing its blockchain solutions hosted internally for food industry customers.

The current series of star ratings is located in the back-end of the block-in trading and in the enabling technology infrastructure, known as mining.

The first initial public offering of blockchain, launched in August in London, was for a mining company, with a crore of ₹ 225. The service is active live in June, but 50,000 customers are waiting to register.

It is clear that technology is nascent and that we are still at the beginning of the adoption curve.

However, the urgency of continuing to rise and fall on the market is highlighted by the assessments according to which an intelligent idea is also assigned in seed investment rounds.

As an evangelist, I say go ahead and do not let the foam intrude.

Nish Kotecha is a serial technology entrepreneur, investor and board member based in London.

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