Blockchain technology became a sensation as soon as it was revealed as an underlying platform for Bitcoin over a decade ago. Some said it would perish away like most internet bubbles, some believed it was just an overhyped gimmick. It’s 2019, and the critics have put to rest convincingly.
Over the years, several major business corporations in the world adopted blockchain. Right from to tech companies like IBM and Microsoft, to banking players like HSBC and Bank of America, businesses from all genres established their in-house blockchain divisions to facilitate research and development, which resulted in unthinkable possibilities.
In the last couple of years, sectors like banking, finance, agriculture, virtual gaming, online gambling, global payments, healthcare, education and many more have seen the emergence of blockchain technology, which has completely revolutionized how companies do business. However, the innovative tech has now recorded its biggest breakthrough yet, as the world’s largest business organization has finally embraced blockchain.
The International Chamber of Commerce (ICC), which came into existence after the First World War, has signed an agreement with a Singapore based start-up, Perlin Net Group to explore ways in which the innovative tech can help the organization. Headquartered in Paris, the ICC has 45 million businesses as members, with a presence in over 130 countries.
The ICC wants to use blockchain technology to facilitate a free flow of goods across the globe, which the organization feels is a necessity to maintain peace. General Secretary of ICC, John Denton said,
“If goods are able to move across borders without the need to be accompanied by troops, there is a higher probability of peace and prosperity.”
As per the terms of the agreement, the ICC and Perlin Net Group will establish a new organization, ICC Blockchain/DLT Alliance. Both parties will explore ways to utilize Perlin’s soon-to-be-launched blockchain platform for enhancing supply chains and cross-border finance. Commenting on the organization’s role and impact on the development of blockchain space, Denton said,
“We can trace back the ICC interventions that made a big impact on the global economy in the 20th century. We think this might be one which we can look back on in 100 years and say the ICC shifted blockchain in a way that enabled the private sector to function more effectively in a sustainable way and actually create more opportunities for people.”
The agreement will see the ICC help Perlin to recruit members on its newborn blockchain alliance by introducing the start-up to its members. ICC’s massive member list includes all national chambers of commerce, and global corporations like Amazon, Coca Cola, FedEx, McDonald’s, and PayPal. Perlin will also join the ICC as its official technology partner, and as per the agreement, will offer free access to its DLT platform at the initial stages.
Denton revealed these developments at the ICC Banking Commission’s recently concluded annual event in Beijing, while the official announcements of the agreement were made on Wednesday in an ICC event in Singapore. However, the agreement was signed last month on the 20th.
The ICC Blockchain/DLT Alliance was already working on a few projects at the time of launch, and the ICC and Perlin will announce the results of their first blockchain proof of concept later this year in May, at the Copenhagen Fashion Summit. The first project from the new tie-up is a collaboration with Asia Pacific Rayon (APR), one of the biggest fabric makers in the world.
The emergence of ICC on the blockchain space will open doors to several possibilities. We can expect a lot of its member companies adopt blockchain, who haven’t done it already. This might just be the “Bluetooth & WiFi” moment for DLT.