Article By Rebecca Campbell
Blockchain has been held back by the idea of anonymous counterparts, which naturally can’t be the case for a global infrastructure.
This is the opinion of Lone Fønss Schrøder, CEO of Concordium, a blockchain network that is aiming to provide both a store of value and the global backbone for keeping track of the world’s transactions. Schrøder made her comments while talking about a report from McKinsey & Company that suggests blockchain has yet to become the game-changer many had expected.
The real opportunity lies in building something everyone can share and use, which is at the same time demonstrably secure, allows for privacy, but does away with anonymity, she said. Once that is in place, businesses and their customers can extend trust in numerous ways – virtually into any sort of transaction, brokerage, escrowing or public service.
Schrøder added, though, that she was optimistic, along with Gartner Group and PwC, that the industry will be a $3 trillion market in 10 years time.
Stepping into Blockchain
Having spent 22 operational years at A.P. Moller-Maersk, a Danish company with activities in logistics, shipping, and energy, and board experience from companies like Volvo and Ikea, as well as serving as a senior advisor at Credit Suisse, Schrøder’s move into the crypto and blockchain space has been both demanding and wonderful, she said.
However, she notes that it’s thanks to her breadth of experience that has enabled her – and so many other companies worldwide – in working hard to understand and shape business models in order to adapt to an increasingly digitized future.
“Concordium stands to change the landscape even for very big businesses if we manage to frame and communicate blockchain technology in the right way, and remove the obstacles that have held it back so far,” said Schrøder.
The network is aiming to provide a backbone of trust between people, businesses, and the public sector. It hopes that with an open infrastructure any individual or business can use it to transfer funds and document agreements, in addition to maintaining indisputable records of data from cars and shipping containers, to ownership of things or provenance of pharmaceuticals.
According to Schrøder, blockchain offers any industry a wealth of advantages over other technologies, including unparalleled security, execution speed, transparency, cost reduction, the ability to audit records, and versatility.
Vast new markets where trust has been too expensive or impossible to deliver can now be addressed, she added. The shady side of earlier blockchains, such as money laundering, will also be much easier to combat because you can always track who you are trading with and the provenance of their funds. This is an absolute requirement in order to secure a global mainstream infrastructure.
That’s only half the battle though. Another part of it is to make people see why they should use it, how they can benefit from it, what it can be used for, and how to introduce it into their business or public services. While it’s certainly not the answer for every use case, as with any new technology it’s expected that there will be bumps along the road to discovery.