Blockchain has the power to impact almost all industries and has applicability to verticals from transportation, supply chain and logistics, energy, retail and e-commerce, to financial services, telecommunications and public sector.
Oracle recently hosted a blockchain roundtable event in Johannesburg, geared towards driving awareness of blockchain services for different industries and highlighting the potential this technology has to transform how every industry does business.
“South African businesses are particularly excited about blockchain as it makes interactions more transparent, secure, efficient and cost-effective,” said Craig Nel, mobile & cognitive experience (MCX) leader at Oracle Middle East, Africa and Turkey.
Companies that experience big losses related to corruption and fraud are looking to blockchain to address these challenges, allowing organisations that might not fully trust each other to agree on a single, distributed source of truth.”
The IDC Worldwide Semi-Annual Blockchain Spending Guide, July 2018 forecasts total blockchain spending for the Middle East and Africa in 2022 at $581 million with a compound annual growth rate of 71.7%.
The guide further forecasts that the public sector, finance and distribution and services will be the top three sectors in terms of spending and that cross-border payment and settlements, assets/goods management and identity management will be the top three use cases on blockchain in the region in 2021.
Oracle in July announced the availability of its Oracle Blockchain Cloud service that provides customers with a development platform to build their own networks, and to quickly integrate with Oracle SaaS and third-party applications they already use, as well as other blockchain networks and Oracle PaaS services.
It also enables users to provision blockchain networks, join other organisations, and deploy and run smart contracts to update and query the ledger.
Organisations and industry consortia are already using Oracle Blockchain Cloud Service to help ease transactions, track goods through supply chains, and reduce costs, including global shipping leaders, multinational manufacturers, food producers and energy marketplaces, it said.
“Worldwide we are seeing that financial service institutions are leading the adoption of blockchain in terms of creating proof of concept deployments and experimenting while consumer products and manufacturing lead in terms of production implementations.
“These industries will pave the way for others to follow. We foresee that businesses will adopt transformational technologies such as chatbots, the Internet of Things and artificial intelligence in combination with blockchain to perform seamless and secure end-to-end interactions,” said Nel.
Consumer demand will play a key role to drive adoption with consumers particularly interested in accessing lower transaction costs and having the ability to track food and deliveries.
In addition, citizens are concerned by the level of fraud and corruption that takes place in the public sector and governments will turn to blockchain for improved transparency and trust.
Features of the new Oracle Blockchain Cloud Service include:
- Complete blockchain platform – start with a complete, production-ready blockchain platform based on Hyperledger Fabric, including membership services, peer nodes, ordering service, with Oracle-added REST proxy and operations console tools.
- Industry’s first and only autonomous blockchain cloud platform to simplify operations and enable customers to focus on applications with Oracle-managed service monitoring, automated recovery, and zero-downtime patching.
- Simple provisioning – provision a blockchain cloud service instance and get all required infrastructure services as embedded resources: compute, containers, local storage, identity management, object store, network, etc.
- Add partner organisations locally or in different geographies easily.
- Hybrid networks – join partners running Hyperledger Fabric outside of Oracle Cloud by importing the organisation’s certificate into an Oracle blockchain cloud service instance.
“Blockchain is a collaborative technology and in the near future we will see industries working together, for example the food or agricultural sector partnering with financial institutions to drive shared value. Blockchain’s benefits go far beyond the individual company or even the industry with everyone standing to gain from its adoption,” said Nel.