November 2018, Issue 3

Intro

Welcome to the 3rd installment of Blockchain press monthly newsletter for November 2018.  Our goal is to keep Canadians educated and informed on the rapidly evolving blockchain and digital currency sectors.  There is lots of information out there and our goal is to bring you the most relevant news and education content monthly in a short concise one pager.

Canada Blockchain News

Canadian Marketing Association to Expand Blockchain Initiatives

Montreal port, Canada Border Services try blockchain

National Bank of Canada Pilots Blockchain

Air Canada Participates in Blockchain-Based Travel Distribution Platform

Bank of Canada Succeed in Phase III of Blockchain Trial

The Canadian border service is looking to blockchain

Canada Looks to Build Blockchain Platform for Cannabis Industry

Canadian Bitcoin Exchange ‘Hacked,’ Says All Funds are Gone

Bank of Canada Estimates 5% of Canadians Own Bitcoin

Medicine Hat, home of Canada’s largest Bitcoin mine

Federation of Sovereign Indigenous Nations pays hacker $20K in bitcoin

Canadian-Based Clothing Charity ‘Coins 4 Clothes’ Uses Bitcoin Cash

Educate Yourself

Blockchain Applications in Insurance Industry
Each industry we work in has opportunities to become more efficient in how it does business everyday, but some industries have opportunities to make significant changes in how they operate with the application of blockchain technologies. One of these industries is Insurance and they have been very active in trying to understand to to take advantage of blockchain technologies. As a report by Deloitte stated, “smart contracts powered by a blockchain could provider insurers and customers with the means to manage claims in a transparent, responsive and irrefutable manner. Contracts and claims could be recorded onto a blockchain and validated by the network, ensuring only valid claims are paid. For example, the blockchain would reject multiple claims for one accident because the network would know that a claim has already been made”. Now this is a very simple use case and more research needs to be done by the industry to really understand the benefits and risks of applying blockchain technologies in Insurance claims processing. The industry has come together to form a couple groups to initiate research projects and share their findings.

In North America, The Institutes RiskBlockTM Alliance is an unprecedented, industry-led consortium collaborating to unlock the potential of blockchain across the insurance industry. RiskBlock will accelerate time to market and adoption through real-world applications and impactful blockchain use cases.

The consortium is engaging the expertise of Deloitte to advance and accelerate this research, this was recently announced on Sep 25th, 2018. You can read about it more here.

Their site has also some good videos and presentations on educating their members on blockchain technologies and opportunities to resolve pain points with blockchain. Check out their website for more info.

In Europe, The Blockchain Insurance Industry Initiative (B3i) was formed in late 2016 as a collaboration of insurers and reinsurers to explore the potential of using Distributed Ledger Technologies within the industry for the benefit of all stakeholders in the value chain.

The vision for B3i is to make insurance more relevant, accessible and affordable for consumers through the power of the ecosystem founded on Blockchain technology which will enable participants to create innovative solutions, products and services.

Blockchain and Charity Transparency

Whenever you make a donation to a charity for a good cause that you care about, you make the assumption that the money is going to be put to good use.  Unfortunately that is not always the case, the lack of transparency in the Charity industry as to how your donations are used is not always clear. Bringing transparency to this industry is not easy but startups in the blockchain space are trying to change that.  Recently the largest cryptocurrency exchange Binance kicked off a project called Binance Blockchain Charity Foundation.  I spend some time doing more research into this space, below you can download a short presentation on my findings.  Lots of great projects that I think will allow us to better track our donations across the world.  

Donation Transparency with Blockchain

October 2018, Issue 2

Intro

Welcome to the 2nd installment of Blockchain press monthly newsletter.  This month we are going to switch it up a bit and focus on a specific application on the blockchain, we are going to look at Point of Sale solutions.  The inventor(s) of Bitcoin had very specific goals in mind when they release the currency to the world, one of them was to enable a world where you can store your digital currency (money) easily without a need for a bank and the cost of transactions would be much cheaper than what we experience today.  I would say this goal is still a work in progress and we might have to wait some time before we see it realized on a large scale.  More to come on this topic in the education section but for now lets go over some news.

Canada Blockchain News

Research paper: Bank of Canada on incentive compatibility on Blockchain

Research paper: Bank of Canada: Can securities be settled on a Blockchain 

News: Canada emerges as a hub for blockchain technology

Coinsquare Subsidiary Launches ETFs on Canada’s TSX

Deloitte helps RiskBlock Alliance expand into Canada

Tech leaders form coalition advocating for blockchain regulation

Educate Yourself

Back to our Point of Sale (POS) solution discussion. As bitcoin and other crytpo currencies go mainstream, businesses will start accepting digital currencies as a form of payment for products and services.  To enable these everyday transactions there has to be a very easy transition for the end customer to want to complete transactions using bitcoin.  This is where point of sale systems and mobile wallets similar to apple or google pay can help.  Another option is pre-paid crypto currency gift cards, which is an easy way to introduce customers to the concept as well.  Below we will review a few projects that are working hard to enable everyday transactions using crypto currencies. 

Please note that these projects are in various stages of implementation on their published road map, please review blogs or social feeds updates to determine project maturity and status.

Pundi X – POS

  • Based out of Asia, focused on Asia/South America currently and going through certification for Canada to deploy their POS products
  • One of the more mature platforms out there with real deployments in Asia
  • For the latest on their progress check out their blog
  • To get an overview of their ecosystem review the white paper

Utrust

  • Based out of Portugal, focused on EU market
  • A platform which combines the power of several blockchain networks into one ecosystem. This simplifies the cryptocurrency payment experience for users while providing a seamless integration for merchants to accept crypto into their existing systems.
  • To get a better understanding, review their value proposition on their blog

Fintech Select

  • Based out of Toronto
  • Services in pre-paid cards, mobile banking and POS crypto currency solutions
  • Selectcoin offers a POS Cryptocurrency solution to provide easy and hassle-free buying and or selling of Cryptocurrencies through our retail partners.   They have developed a proprietary solution that turns any of our retailers’ POS terminal into a Cryptocurrency exchange.
  • Read more about their solution on their site

STK Token

  • Based out of Toronto
  • Currently running pilots via their STK digital wallet
  • STK will be a solution that will facilitate real-time cryptocurrency transactions at points of sale. Their vision is to create a globally accessible alternative to traditional banking, allowing you to store your money safely, access it instantly and transact with it anywhere, in any currency including crypto.
  • For a overview and demo of their solution have a read here
  • If you want to read over the white paper, you can review it here

September 2018, Issue 1

Intro

Welcome to the first issue of the monthly newsletter of Blockchainpress. Our goal is to keep Canadians educated and informed on the rapidly evolving blockchain and digital currency sectors.  There is lots of information out there and our goal is to bring you the most relevant news and education content monthly in a short concise one pager.

Canada Blockchain News

Canada delays cryptocurrency regulation 

BMO Bank tests Canadian debt issuance on blockchain 

National Research Council of Canada blockchain update 

Crypto exchange Coinsquare entering EU market 

Canada Revenue Agency bitcoin ATM research survey 

Bank of Canada study finds 58% of Canadians own BTC

Survey – blockchain impact on accounting departments

Matt Spoke of Aion speaks at Toronto Futurist conference

George Brown College launches blockchain dev program

Educate Yourself

What is the business model behind cryptocurrency wallets?

Video Streaming – Decentralization and Cryptoeconomics

Can Blockchain Disrupt The E-Book Market? 

Blockchain ecosystem – understanding the verticals and major players

CORE Magazine, July 2018 Issue – always a good read