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Companies need to ‘de-hype’ the blockchain

South African companies need to take a step back and ‘de-hype’ their plans to include everything on a blockchain.

This is according to the CEO of Centbee, Lorien Gamaroff, who was speaking at the BusinessTech Fintech conference on Wednesday (11 September).

“When building products you usually find what people need and then determine how to service that need. Blockchain, meanwhile, has always been a solution looking for a problem,” he said.

Gamaroff said that there are now thousands of blockchains created by companies, making it very difficult to grasp what is actually being offered by the technology.

He added that everyone who is pushing their flavour of blockchain has their own agenda and politics.

“I believe strongly that there will only be one blockchain at the end of the day. Similar to a singular internet, we will have a blockchain that incorporates the best parts of each offering.”

The blockchain that becomes de facto will be used for all sorts of things. “In many respects it will replace the internet in terms of how people store information and monetise data.”

If something is useful and “scarce” then it will be valuable, he said.

What to look for in a blockchain

Gamaroff said that there are a number of factors to consider when looking at a blockchain:

  • Scale – Gamaroff said it was vitally important to have a blockchain that can scale with time. He added that the only way you can achieve scale is through commercialisation;
  • Utility – If your blockchain is not useful and all you can do is ‘hold’ it, then your plan is just a complicated Ponzi scheme. If something is useful and scale then it is valuable;
  • Legal – If you don’t have a compliant blockchain that follows regulations and KYC (know your customer) rules, then it is dead in the water;
  • Stable – If you have a protocol that can change then you are giving no one confidence.

Gamaroff said that he believes that once the single blockchain is established along these four main factors, it will become the base on which many different technologies will emerge.

He said that even national currencies will eventually be launched on top of such a blockchain.

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