San Francisco recently played host to BTC Inc’s flagship conference on blockchain technology, Distributed 2018. This conference featured a number of prominent experts in the various business applications of distributed ledgers, many of whom specialize in particularly niche fields of the space, participating in panels that gave them a chance to share their expertise with attendees.
On one such discussion panel, several entrepreneurs carried out an in-depth exploration of the current state of tokenized utilities and securities, as well as the potential future adoption of asset tokenization in markets that reach beyond cryptocurrency enthusiasts. Moderated by Scott Robinson, the founder and vice president of Plug and Play, four experts approached the tokenization of securities contracts from their own areas of interest.
Rafael Cosman, a co-founder of TrustToken, specialized in connecting assets to blockchains and described how his USD-backed stablecoin, trueUSD, is going to be followed up by the similar stablecoins trueEuro and trueYen. Jay Thakrar, an investor at ConsenSys, discussed his experience with security tokens and utility tokens, meaning both those used for the secondary trading of assets as well as things like capital raising and incentives engineering. The CEO of Harbor, Joshua Stein, outlined his business model of tokenizing traditional private securities, and Dharma’s founder, Nadav Hollander, talked about his generic protocol for administering securities instruments on a blockchain.
The four of them offered a variety of perspectives on the relative importance of different obstacles to tokenized assets, but they seemed generally to agree that the adoption curve for tokenized securities could become a problem in the future. As many of the people trading for traditional securities assets tend not to have interest in tokens and private keys, Stein asserted that a goal to wider adoption is for tokenized securities to be treated indistinguishably from any other securities investment.
For a more in-depth explanation and a variety of other blockchain-related panel discussions from Distributed 2018, visit Distributed’s YouTube channel.
The Enterprise Ethereum Alliance has announced a "Token Taxonomy Initiative" to develop universal definitions for tokens to encourage their interchangeability across blockchain platforms. Members of the initiative include Microsoft, R3, ConsenSys, IBM, EY, Accenture and Intel.
Gemini Trust, a New York-based cryptocurrency exchange, has announced support for Segregated Witness (SegWit) addresses and transaction batching. As a result, customers can now use SegWit addresses for bitcoin deposits and withdrawals, ideally improving processing times and lowering bitcoin withdrawal fees.
Food producer Nestlé and retailer Carrefour will equip the packaging of a French instant mashed potato product with a QR code that provides blockchain-based data about its origins to consumers. The pilot was developed in conjunction with IBM Food Trust.