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New Blockchain Development Beyond Financial Services

Fintech is being driven by the Financial Services sector. That said, leaders within the Technology, Media and Telecommunications industries are also planning a significant technology investment in blockchain during 2017, according to the latest worldwide market study by Deloitte.

However, understanding of this new technology is uneven, based upon the study findings. Many senior executives are still uninformed about the use cases, while others consider it among their company’s highest priorities. Besides, ongoing commitments to blockchain varies by industry.

Blockchain Applications Market Development

Thirty-nine percent of senior executives at large U.S. companies indicated they had little or no knowledge about blockchain technology. The majority (61 percent), though, claimed blockchain knowledge ranging from broad to expert.

Furthermore, some of these blockchain-informed executives see the nascent technology as crucial for their organization’s forward-looking business strategy and for their industry.

Fifty-five percent of this group said their company would be at a competitive disadvantage if it failed to adopt the technology. Forty-two percent of those surveyed who claimed some knowledge of blockchain believe it will disrupt their industry.

Meanwhile, the survey also revealed that blockchain investment and adoption may be more complex than many observers had anticipated. But that hasn’t discouraged the early-adopters.

For instance, despite the relative immaturity of the technology, 21 percent of blockchain-informed senior executives -- across a wide range of industries -- said their firms have already brought blockchain into production, and 25 percent plan to do so within the next year.

This progress around blockchain production is due in part to investments many companies say they’ve already made, or are in the late planning stages with prior proof-of-concept deployments.

Twenty-eight percent of these respondents reported that their companies have already invested $5 million or more in blockchain-related technologies, with 10 percent already investing $10 million or more.

Outlook for Blockchain Technology Investment

Looking forward, 25 percent of the survey respondents expect to invest more than $5 million in blockchain technology during the next calendar year (for 2017 deployment and beyond).

“This diversity may be a testament to the versatility of the technology,” said David Schatsky, managing director at Deloitte LLP. “But it's also a reflection of the fact that, despite the hype, the impact that blockchain will likely have on businesses in various industries is not yet fully understood.”

Executives surveyed in the consumer products and manufacturing industry, for instance, expressed the most bullish blockchain outlook, with 42 percent of respondents in this industry planning an investment of $5 million or more in the coming calendar year. Technology, media and telecom executives follow at 27 percent, and financial services at 23 percent.

While business leader views on blockchain benefits vary, there’s more consensus about the main barriers to widespread adoption. Deloitte believes that a perceived obstacle is the lack of technical standards. In fact, 56 percent of the survey respondents said that technical standards would create a tipping-point to widespread adoption in the future.

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