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How Traditional Finance Companies Can Safeguard Their Future in the Age of Blockchain

Author: Patrick Lastennet, Director of Marketing & Business Development – Financial Services at Interxion 

As enthusiasm towards blockchain builds, how can enterprises take advantage? In recent years a number of enterprise-facing solutions and consortia have been developed to promote adoption and aid integration. Some of the best-known private solutions gaining interest today include:

  • The Enterprise Ethereum Alliance (EEA); Many people know Ethereum as the public blockchain that has spawned a wave of ICOs through its smart contract capabilities. What’s perhaps less known is the network’s enterprise solution. The EEA customises the Ethereum blockchain for enterprise needs to ‘define enterprise-grade software capable of handling the most complex, highly demanding applications at the speed of business.’ Its membership covers a range of Fortune 500 companies, including Accenture, JP Morgan, Microsoft and Credit Suisse.
  • R3 Corda; Corda is a distributed ledger designed for financial services. Its environment does not seek to operate as a blockchain, but rather as a decentralised database that banks and other institutions can use for their processes. Its global network comprises more than 200 institutions, offering integration and interoperability through decentralised applications called CorDapps. It has a wide partner network that includes leading companies such as AWS, Microsoft, Oracle and HP Enterprise.
  • Hyperledger Fabric; Backed by the Linux Foundation, Hyperledger is an open-source, cross-industry blockchain collaboration network. Fabric is its blockchain framework integration giving businesses a ‘plug-and-play’ solution for developing applications through its ‘chaincode’ smart contract engine. Hyperledger’s membership includes IBM, Fujitsu, SAP and American…

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Breaking from tradition

by Lee Hills, founder of SolutionsHub, offers traditional investors advice on how to approach initial coin offerings 

As the world goes digital, traditional ways of doing business are changing beyond all recognition. Even heavily regulated sectors and practices find themselves being disrupted.

Take investing, for example. Crowdfunding has been around in various guises for a few years now, with several platforms gaining prominence. In the last couple of years, however, a new type has been garnering significant attention – Initial Coin Offering, or ICO.

An ICO is an event where a company releases its own cryptocurrency for funding. It creates a certain number of cryptographic (“crypto) tokens and sells those tokens to its intended audience by establishing a smart-contract (an immutable piece of code published publicly online), with those willing to participate sending Bitcoins or Ethereum to receive tokens.

As a result, the company gets the capital to fund further product development, R&D and expansion and token purchasers get their heavily discounted crypto tokens which can be used to purchases goods and services on the platform, participate in the ecosystem, or other benefits afforded to those with tokens. This way of raising capital is primarily used by companies operating in cryptocurrency and blockchain.

Whilst this may seem like an Initial Public Offering, investors should be aware of the differences. For instance, in an IPO shares always denote a proportion of ownership, which…

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Workers Can't Make Sense Of The Spring Clean In The Office
  • Only 41% of workers spring cleaned their office this year
  • 44% said they don’t know which tasks are involved with a spring clean
  • 27% said they need help with the spring clean

WORKERS have a lack of understanding about the annual spring clean when it comes to their office, new research reveals.

A survey of 1,015 UK office workers carried out by leading household appliances retailer, AppliancesDirect.co.uk revealed how only 41% said that they did a spring clean in the office this year.

In fact, while 71% have a cleaner at work, 42% of workers believe that their business expects them to do a spring clean in the office.

When quizzed on the reasons for these spring cleaning habits among workers, an overwhelming 44% of those surveyed revealed that they don’t know which cleaning tasks are involved when it comes to the annual spring clean.

A further 37% admitted they didn’t even know what the spring clean means and a similar number (35%) said they didn’t have the time to spend spring cleaning the home this year.

This was followed by 27% who confessed that it is because they needed help spring cleaning, while 19% said they believe their office doesn’t need cleaning.

The survey also found that some key spring cleaning tasks were not done by many, including dusting skirting boards (14%) and vacuuming air vents (7%).

Mark Kelly, marketing manager at AppliancesDirect.co.uk, comments: “Surprisingly there are still many of us who don’t…

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