Blockchain as technology was popularised by Bitcoin, a robust, real publicly accessed ledger. Many organizations realized that they had to try this new tech, with many experiments and models, ultimately evolving a new ‘avatar’ of blockchain. Rarely do we come across commercial implementation of blockchain in its original form. What has evolved is more of a distributed ledger, a cousin of public blockchain, into a permissioned private ledger. The original central feature of decentralization also yielding to a more centralized system.
In the new form it’s more like a permissioned, centralized ledger, sparsely distributed. Most organizations are attempting this form of blockchain for multi-party transactions, maintaining immutable records or cross-border transactions banking on the immutability and transparency features. In the entire process the consensus mechanism has made way to the authorised parties authenticating transactions.
Building on such technology entirely new business models can be brought into the commercial world. A third party operated so called ‘blockchain’ with above features can turn out to be a great business model. As an instance an entrepreneur or intrapreneur developing a ledger for healthcare sector to be accessed by patients, hospitals, medical practitioners and the insurance company will be a great success. Here the entrepreneur has no motivation to upload or access data, he/she turns out to be an operator offering these services in the cloud. The patients allow doctors and hospitals to upload their records to the ledger, if they allow the insurance companies can access this data as well.
As a business model the operator can charge multiple parties:
Patient who is interested in maintaining his/her records for a long period of time
Hospitals which are required to maintain patient records
Private medical practitioners who are expected to maintain patient records
Insurance companies who can offer differential insurance policies based on personal health records.
Consider building trust throughout the supply chain of perishable goods. Coupled with IOT the appropriate blockchain technology can offer trustworthy information to every participant of this chain. The conditions at every stage can be monitored and controlled by responsible logistic organization while the consumers and others can tracked the conditions and movement of goods as they move from one point to next.
There are multiple possibilities – One only needs to look deeper!