Deloitte, one of the biggest accounting firms, with the largest professional services network in the world, recently announced their opening of a blockchain lab in New York. Situated in the Wall Street district, the lab will develop blockchain technologies with a focus on deploying blockchain-based solutions to their financial services clients.
The NY blockchain lab will be staffed with over 20 developers and designers, with the goal of innovating and disrupting how financial services currently function. Deloitte views 2017 as a “make-or-break” year for the emerging technology and is investing in advancing and promoting blockchain integration. Joe Guastella, a principal with Deloitte Consulting LLP, said:
Innovation is a top priority for Deloitte – we continue to strategically invest in our capabilities to help clients adapt to a world where success or survival depends heavily on innovation. Our ecosystem for education, ideation, strategy, application prototyping and development is there to support Deloitte's clients and practitioners across industries in harnessing the opportunities and capabilities that blockchain technology has to offer.
In May 2016, Deloitte opened up the first blockchain lab in Ireland and is planning to announce more facilities in the coming year. The New York lab is going to work on developing blockchain proofs of concept into functional prototypes with the idea of integrating them into existing financial operations. They plan to leverage their web of innovators and developers, international specialist teams, and preferred technology companies to foster deployed blockchain use cases and real world applications. Eric Piscini, a principal with Deloitte Consulting LLP, said:
With the technology not yet having reached widespread adoption, 2017 could be the make-or-break year for blockchain technology. Financial institutions have the power and ability to move blockchain to the next level. To get there, companies will need to move away from churning out proofs of concept and begin producing and implementing solutions. That's a big part of the goal with Deloitte's blockchain lab.
The finance industry is primed for disruption and it would greatly benefit from the increase in efficiency offered by blockchain technology. According to a recent survey by Deloitte, only 12% of blockchain-knowledgeable financial services executives responded that their company is actively using blockchain tech. Though, 24% said their companies would go live with blockchain-based solutions in 2017, aiming to strike while the iron is hot.
While the NY blockchain lab is mainly focused on integrating the tech into financial institutions, they also plan to develop for other industries as well. Deloitte didn’t specifically mention Ethereum, but it’s obvious many of these technologies could be developed using Ethereum’s platform and is just another example of what’s good for the goose is good for the gander.
The entire blockchain ecosystem is just waiting for the first domino to fall. Once the viability of this technology is confirmed through daily use, its myriad benefits will become apparent and the integration of blockchain-based systems will become the industry standard.