Blockchain companies and cryptocurrency traders went into overdrive this week at the industry’s most hyped conference in New York.
The CoinDesk Consensus 2018 conference tripled in size from last year with 250 speakers. And it’s even sparked a boon for bitcoin holders — with the digital token’s price climbing up from a three-week low after it kicked off on Monday.
At about $2000 a ticket, the conference brought together the industry’s best and brightest, including Twitter cofounder Jack Dorsey and a contingent of Aussie companies on an Austrade tour.
Austrade senior investment specialist Kevin Cryan points to major blockchain projects in Australia by the ASX, Australia Post and CommBank.
“There is a challenge in Australia because we are outside of the major flows, but it also gives us the opportunity to do things in a more unique way,” Cryan told Stockhead.
“There is a freedom to operate here that allows for creativity beyond the overseas market.”
While they are in the Big Apple the contingent will meet with the World Bank, which has a keen interest in the Australian blockchain projects, Cryan says.
“The World Bank is keen on Australia’s position because of Standards Australia’s leadership in the global standard and our proximity to the ASEAN market.
“They see it as a way to improve cross-border digital transactions — which could be pivotal in driving economic activity in the region.
Austrade general manager Nicola Watkinson said the size and scope of the Aussie delegation “reflects the diversity in the local ecosystem and showcases innovative solutions from a broad spectrum of industries, from digital currencies and payments to agricultural supply chains, smart contract and identity management”.
“Blockchain and distributed ledger technology have the potential to rewire our digital infrastructure, challenge how we interact with data and assets, and transform business models.”
Here are Aussie blockchain companies which flew the flag at Consensus 2018:
1. Blockchain Global
Sam Lee is the founder and CEO of Blockchain Global and has led the company to complete the incubation and investment of more than 60 blockchain technology start-up companies.
At its core, Blockchain Global has a vision to uplift trust throughout the digital spectrum and already has eight offices in five countries – headquartered in Melbourne.
Beyond backing profitable blockchain startups, the company co-invests with strategic cornerstone investors in M&As that bring blockchain technology into small and medium cap public companies, giving the combined entity access to capital markets, and providing retail investors exposure to exciting opportunities, leveraging potential unstoppable and borderless technologies.
2. Apollo Capital
Apollo Capital prides itself on being Australia’s premier crypto fund – with investment decisions led by Henrik Andersson.
Andersson has 17 years of global financial market experience in Stockholm, Singapore, and New York, and has been investing in crypto assets since 2013.
In the crypto downturn of the last few months, the funds approach has been to allocate capital in some of the most interesting projects building out the crypto ecosystem.
Apart from reasonably established verticals such as store of value, currency and privacy, Apollo says they systematically research innovations in areas such as general-purpose platforms, stable- coins, cross-blockchain and security token platforms.
BlockGrain is currently running Australia’s first agricultural Public Token Sale after raising over $3.5 million during a private sale event that involved more than 1000 everyday investors.
The project’s vision is to be the largest industry-wide platform for managing the agricultural supply chain, connecting sellers and buyers, providing paddock-to-plate traceability and allowing logistics companies to manage their operations.
BlockGrain is a simple-to-use, secure, independent software solution that automates the sharing of information across all commodity supply chain participants.
Combining user-friendly native mobile applications for farming and logistics operations with a powerful web application for business administration, BlockGrain provides a complete end-to-end visibility of the agricultural supply chain.
E-Nome is a Sydney-based start-up led by a group of experienced industry professionals from healthcare management, healthcare IT and business backgrounds.
E-Nome is developing a patent pending blockchain based health data and clinical trial software system that empowers the consumer to take control of their health and genomic data.
Consumers will be able to access their health data on their smartphone, with ultimate security and privacy.
The system allows consumers to anonymously share their data to participate and assist in medical research. The research portal will provide direct access to health data and facilitate more efficient clinical trial recruitment.
5. Civic Ledger
Founded in 2016, Civic Ledger is an Australian civic-focused blockchain company that aims to help governments solve complex business processes by digitising operations and services using blockchain technologies.
Its mission is to make people’s interactions with governments easier, faster, more secure and transparent.
The Civic Ledger team is made up of public and financial sector experts, software engineers, and venture know-how inspired to solve business process challenges faced by public sector markets.
They say its this diversity in backgrounds and skill sets that allows it to see the potential of blockchain technologies and smart contracts to enable citizens and organisations to self-manage the speed, convenience, and control over their transactions within digitalised societies.
6. Havven Australia
Havven is a decentralised payment network and stablecoin designed to enable everyday cryptocurrency purchases — and earlier this year raised $38.6 million to build it.
It aims to provide a solution to the volatile crypto market by providing a tradeable digital coin with stable value.
The network utilises a dual token system to reduce price volatility where fees from transactions within the system are used to collateralise the network.
The collateral is secured by the blockchain enabling the creation of a new asset-backed stablecoin, nomin tokens. Each transaction will generate fees that are paid to Havven token holders.
As transaction volume grows, the value of the platform increases and active participants are rewarded with increased transaction fees. This permission-less, low-fee, and stable payment network will enable anyone anywhere to transact with anyone else. Join us in creating the future of money
7. Power Ledger
Power Ledger is a peer-to-peer marketplace for renewable energy — and one of Australia’s most successful ICOs.
Strategic adviser Dante Disparte joined the team earlier this year and spoke on the “Decentralised Electric Infrastructure” panel on Tuesday.
Power Ledger gives retailers the ability to empower consumers (or in an unregulated environment, the consumers themselves) to trade electricity with one another and receive payment in real-time from an automated and trustless reconciliation and settlement system.
Earlier this month the project announced its first commercial deployment in the United States at Northwestern University Evanston campus, as part of its partnership with Clean Energy Blockchain Network.
Add to that its deal to trial the platform with Kansai Electric Power Co (KEPCO), a mostly-Osaka-owned Japanese utility company, and it’s already been a big year.
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