Blockchain makes more noise in 2H19: Hearing from services vendors and consultancies

Last month, my colleagues Geoff Woollacott and Boz Hristov published a report on the business of blockchain, and next month, Geoff and I will be attending a KPMG event on the same topic. We are looking forward to learning how that Big Four firm approaches both the technology and the business model impacts, on itself and its clients. Our May 2019 event perspective on EY’s blockchain summit may serve as a way to contrast and compare two of the Big Four; how they differentiate will be key as technology diminishes differentiation across consultancies’ digital transformation activities. And we want to hear more use cases, including what clients have done beyond experimenting and how they are getting to scale.

Earlier this month, we had a chance to get feedback on our blockchain analysis from Atos and from another client that said the following:

  • “TBR believes that blockchain is here to stay and transforming transactions through blockchain allows vendors to accelerate digital transformation.”
  • “The biggest challenge for participants is solving the coopetition paradox, which revolves around establishing common governance and standards across competitive and cross-industry ecosystems — and yet also presents a long-tail opportunity, especially as optimizing financial management functions and improving IT operations management rank as the top two areas where buyers are looking to prioritize spending in the next few years.”
  • “[TBR mentions] the materialization of a network of networks that will scale distributed ledger adoption as the de facto economic commerce platform. However, reaching broad blockchain network interconnectivity will take years, if not decades.”

I think our client summed up the analysis well and left open a few important questions. First, what can serve as accelerants for “broad blockchain network interconnectivity”? If clients clamor for more and faster, which actors taking what steps will speed this up? Second, how will partnerships between consultancies and blockchain technology vendors evolve, in commercial, go-to-market and even intellectual property terms? Third, if and/or when this becomes the de facto economic commerce platform, who will be disrupted and who will capitalize on the shift to this platform?

All this and more will be on our minds next week in New York City — event perspective to follow!

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