Over the last two years, innovators around the world have been hailing the transformative power of blockchain as the concept moves further into the mainstream. The technology that underpins the much-hyped Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies is a clear disrupter within the financial services industry, and has now been recognised by users and investors for its potential across other business models and use cases. Far beyond its initial singular use case in payments and transactions, blockchain is now making waves and giving rise to significant disruption in the business realm, bringing new efficiencies, transparency and security to operational models.
London headquartered IOV42, founded in 2016, is leading the way in its vision to expand the use of blockchain technology for enterprises. Set to go live in the summer of 2018, it has an exciting goal – to create a next-generation blockchain platform that will fulfill the promise of the technology to drive business and social good. Michael Ganser, CEO, states, “The founders of IOV42 saw early on how blockchain technology could be applied across a wide range of business use cases. They began to build a solution to deliver on the massive promise of this technology, overcoming the common limitations of blockchain to allow enterprises to harness its power at scale, and make new business models a reality.”
Breaking through today’s limitations
Developing blockchain from a cryptocurrency mechanism into an enterprise-ready technology has a number of challenges. Ganser explains, “Blockchain is a system used for building trust, and for keeping transparent and immutable historical records. This has been put to good use in the FinTech sector for payments, but there are restrictions on how far the technology can reach in terms of interoperability, security, and scalability. Our goal is to fulfill blockchain’s potential by systematically managing and overcoming its current limitations.”
IOV42’s mission is to fix the road to enterprise blockchain adoption by delivering decentralised systems that are less vulnerable to internal and external security threats, costly downtime, and operational failure. As a globally-focused firm, IOV42 has developed the fastest architecture in the market, and aims to be as scalable as the Internet itself.
"IOV42’s blockchain delivers transparency, regulation adherence, and compliance seamlessly"
Ganser states, “We have been able to build on the idea of focusing on identities as the key element of blockchain which allows us to overcome the systematic challenges in the market.” The innovation of IOV42 is built on a foundation of identity-centric, multiple blockchain network systems, moving away from the traditionally siloed infrastructure of business operations and creating a truly global, trusted solution.
As a globally-focused firm, IOV42 has developed the fastest architecture in the market, and aims to be as scalable as the Internet itself
One of the most pressing challenges in blockchain technology today is the fact that various systems are not interoperable, which creates lag time and miscommunication that can cost businesses significantly. For instance, supply chain systems may not speak directly to, or pull data from, vendor partners and suppliers, and that missed connection causes friction in the system. IOV42’s systems are structured to allow information segregation across different regions and regulatory jurisdictions and requirements, providing a basis for mass adoption of the technology with appropriate data protection and resilience.
Ganser explains how IOV42 will combat blockchain’s current issues with scalability, so that the technology can be used in an enterprise context. He states, “The moment we go live, we will be rolling out blockchain systems as a service, in a region by region model. All of these systems can be inter-networked as needed.”
The company will be orchestrating the infrastructure to enable this vision through a combination of partnerships with several ISPs and System Integrators. Although each is independent of one another, they are all part of the geographical consortium the company is currently developing. Countries and Enterprises can also built their own nodes. Ganser also explains that a marketplace will be available later down the line, with operations taking place on a local level but open for global collaboration and benefit. Any third party will be able to utilise the marketplace to their advantage under this design.
Unsurprisingly, security is at the top of the agenda for IOV42’s leadership and technology teams. The company focuses its efforts on rapid consensus and data protection innovations, combined with dedicated cryptography hardware to ensure the highest level of security. Ganser states, “We have a laser focus on data privacy and a zero knowledge principle for maximum data protection. That gives us an unmatched advantage.”
Countless Opportunities for Enterprise Use
Tapping into the potential of blockchain in enterprise environments is no small feat, but IOV42 has been making connections with major players across several industry verticals to begin pre-testing the service since its inception.
Ganser states, “There will be impressive use cases that emerge related to the Internet of Things, given that there are already more than 15 billion connected devices, and millions of transaction requirements per second.” IOV42's next-generation blockchain platform is currently the only technology that can deliver this speed without compromising on quality or scale. Additionally, Ganser and his team see significant opportunities across the public sector related to digital identification, and enterprise supply chains for interoperability and transparency.
He also sees its potential to bring significant relief for those grappling with GDPR, as it will enable compliance with many of these requirements by default.
The automotive sector, insurance and healthcare, and medical and telecommunications industries are also primed to benefit from a decentralised, secure blockchain network. Ganser states, “It is about simplifying the process without losing speed and security in any capacity.”
IOV42 offers an open API structure to allow ISVs and companies to customise the platform to meet their individual use cases. In-depth training will be provided through specialised programs, giving developers and users an optimal environment in which to get up to speed quickly. The support structure for customers using the IOV42 blockchain as a service is unprecedented because of its open architecture, and its foundation as a truly global offering. Ganser explains, “Each country has a different set of laws and regulations, but because of our regional system, we can customise the platform to meet these unique needs. IOV42’s blockchain delivers transparency, regulation adherence, and compliance seamlessly.” IOV42 is also supporting countries and governments by offering a specific security layer and allowing them to set up determined government nodes that suit their security regulations.
To bring a fully functioning blockchain network as a service to the market, IOV42 is open to working with market innovators across various industries and is open for Partnerships with leading System Integrators, ISPs, and Consulting companies. Ganser explains, “Over the next 12 months we are aiming to work with the innovators and early adaptors - the countries, cities and enterprises which want to gain competitive advantage or significantly improve quality of service for citizens and customers. As we launch and expand, we will remain focused on partnering with the most innovative, fast-moving service providers, ISVs and companies that understand the technology advantages blockchain brings to the market.” In addition to these go to market and integration partners, IOV42 is also leveraging its relationships with leading blockchain experts around the world as well as university professors on cybersecurity, and industrial executives.
Currently, the company is gearing up for its upcoming launch in the summer of 2018. After that, it will concentrate on rolling out more features to deliver a full stack in the following three to six months. Ganser explains, “The cost of a service platform has little to do with the technology behind it, but instead is based on the components around it. Buying blockchain as a service removes these complexities, allowing customers to operate without restrictive silos.”
With a simple and a straightforward approach, IOV42 can focus on the unique business needs of each customer and make it effortless to customise the service for specific use cases. Ganser concludes, “What IOV42 is doing is truly revolutionary, and it will remain our mission to continue to out-innovate in the market. We want every company and every country to be part of the blockchain revolution, and we are ready to deliver on that promise.”