Everyone is talking about blockchain.?
The nascent technology has?the potential to allow a
digital asset to be securely and seamlessly transferred from one
party to another, eliminating the need for third-party
intermediaries and shortening settlement time to seconds.
recent data, the estimated annual budget for blockchain
initiatives in 2016 is $1 billion.
Earlier this week,
Business Insider interviewed chief technology officers, chief
innovation officers, startup founders and venture
capitalists?to ask them the one thing that will change
financial services as we know it in the next decade.
The immense potential for
blockchain resonated from startup founders to incumbent industry
Here’s a sampling:
Debra Walton, chief product
and content officer at Thomson Reuters, ?firmly believes that
the blockchain will have as profound of an effect on the world
of business and commerce as the internet …. The impact of
blockchain will be most felt in how transactions are executed,
cleared and settled.”
- CommonBond cofounder and CEO David Klein said?the
technology “will be the most disruptive thing to happen in
finance over the next decade. Possibly over the next
- He added: “It will affect all areas of finance: lending,
asset management, payments and more. And its impact won’t be
limited to just the finance industry; it will affect the finance
functions inside every company around the world regardless of
- Mike Bodson, president and CEO of DTCC, also believes
blockchain has the potential to revolutionize the financial
services industry. We?re still a long ways away, however. ?We?re
probably overestimating the impact blockchain will have on the
industry in the next two years, and underestimating its impact in
10 years,? he said.
He sees the technology has
having the potential to modernize the post-trade environment in
areas like clearance, settlement and payments. While the scale
of US equities makes it less likely to be impacted by
blockchain, areas like repo
can benefit from the ?efficiencies and a
single version of the truth it provides.?
While Wall Street and other
industries are clearly excited about the technology, there are
still significant challenges ahead, including uncertainty over
regulation, the immense cost of overhauling legacy systems, and
major security issues.
Earlier this month, hackers stole $72 million worth of bitcoin
from accounts at the Hong Kong cryptocurrency exchange Bitfinex.
Back in June, hackers stole $55 million worth of ether, a rival
recent Greenwich Associates survey
?of 119 bankers and financial technology
executives on concerns over the blockchain found that they were
worried first about other banks seeing their transactions and
then about the security of the transactions themselves.
It?s clear that these security
issues will need to be addressed before the widespread
implementation of blockchain.
Suresh Kumar, the chief
information officer at BNY Mellon, believes that a high potential
emerging technology like blockchain will only be a game-changer
?if they achieve a network effect, which means we need to work
together to establish standards.?
That echoes another emerging
industry, that of the self-driving car.?
?Think of the impact that the
computer had on industry,? said Klein at CommonBond. ?That’s what
we’re talking about with blockchain. It’s the self-driving car of
Welcome to the ‘self-driving car of finance’ – Business Insider}