Blockchain Weekly Recap 6-4-2016
Branson’s Necker Island Site of Weekend’s Blockchain Summit
This weekend’s blockchain summit will have an even more exclusive feel, as the invited attendees gather on Necker Island – the Caribbean haven owned by Sir Richard Branson. The summit is being sponsored by MaiTai Global and the BitFury Group, and will feature participants from a wide variety of competencies and background. Those guests will include luminaries such as Virgin Galactic’s Beth Moses, European Parliament member Marietje Schaake, and many others. Together, the group will exchange ideas as they explore finance issues involving the world’s movement of currency and the needs of the unbanked, privacy and identity-related security concerns, and the potential offered by new applications of blockchain technology outside of the world of finance.
R3 Adds AIA Life Insurance Group to Consortium
After seeing China’s Ping an Insurance Group become the first Chinese financial firm to join the R3CEV blockchain consortium in the last part of May, the group continued to gain new allies in the area with the addition of AIA this week. AIA was reportedly drawn to the consortium by its comprehensive array of resources, including its consultancy services, research capacity, and technological edge. The company’s chief operations officer noted that the R3 group could offer the firm an opportunity to better understand the real potential offered by emerging distributed ledger technologies.
Microsoft Partners with ConsenSys and Blockstack Labs of Blockchain Identity System
Microsoft’s interest in distributed ledger technology continues apace, as the company recently announced a partnership with ConsenSys and Blockstack Labs to create a new open-source blockchain identity system. Working in unison with developers from around the world, the partnered companies are committed to developing a system that will connect apps, products, and people in an interoperable way across a variety of different blockchains – as well as different cloud providers, companies, and other entities. The news comes as the United Nations recently began developing its own action plan designed to facilitate its goal of providing every human being on earth with his or her own unique legal digital identity by 2030.
Microsoft’s collaborative effort is designed to leverage the Blockstack and the ConsenSys uPort identity systems as the partners create a cross-chain that will be interoperable, scalable, and usable even with new distributed ledger technology in the future. The goal is to release a developer framework on Azure over the next few weeks. Blockstack is already reportedly the largest identity system using blockchain technology, with an estimated 50,000 unique names and registered identities.
Korean Government Supporting FinTech Startups
The South Korean government in Seoul recently affirmed its commitment to providing real support for new FinTech startups as those companies pursue new applications for emerging technologies like the blockchain. The government has plans to develop an investment bank designed to provide capital to new FinTech startup companies, in an effort to “make sure that start-ups with creative ideas get enough venture capital.”
ASX Seeks Marketplace Feedback for Post-Trade Blockchain Platform
ASX, the Australian Securities Exchange recently launched an effort to obtain market feedback as it sets out to develop its post-trade blockchain platform. The exchange has even created its acceler8 showcase space at the Sydney Exchange Centre with the goals of demonstrating how the new platform is designed to operate, and gathering critical ideas and feedback from the center’s visitors. The new effort is in line with deputy CEO Peter Holm’s recent commitment to engage with customers so that any new platform design would better meet those consumers’ needs.