PwC has recruited 15 leading technology specialists to exploit and commercialise Blockchain, the technology that powers the crypto-currency, Bitcoin.
The new Blockchain team will be based in PwC’s Belfast office and is expected to grow to over 40 digital and technology specialists during 2016.
The announcement comes just days after Sir Mark Walport, the UK’s chief scientific adviser urged the government to adopt the blockchain technology to run key public services like tax collection, benefits or the issuing of passports.
PwC’s decision to focus on blockchain technology represents a major step in the firm’s move towards developing FinTech (financial technology) solutions that are becoming a catalyst for change and innovation in the financial services industry.
Announcing the establishment of the Belfast Blockchain team, Steve Davies, PwC partner and EMEA FinTech Leader, said:
“There’s clear evidence that banks, institutions and even governments are looking at blockchain technology as a secure storage and distribution solution.
“Now there is growing interest and a real demand from our clients to help understand the implications of blockchain and how to respond to it. So, as the blockchain juggernaut continues to gather pace, PwC will be well placed to service our clients’ needs at a global level.
“PwC is now breaking new ground in developing radical FinTech solutions and these appointments represent the first stage of our plans to grow a world-class Fintech offering.
“We expect the initial core team of 15 experts to grow rapidly, with PwC in Belfast continuing to expand, exploit and deliver technology and digital solutions to global clients.”
While there is continued debate over the role of Bitcoin as a mainstream “currency,” the underlying blockchain technology, which consists of “blocks” of data in a digital ledger, is believed to be highly resistant to malicious tampering.
The NASDAQ exchange is currently using a Blockchain-based system to record trades in privately held companies, while Bank of England research suggests that Blockchains could have far-reaching implications for the financial industry.
The UK’s technology sector is increasingly focusing on FinTech as offering radical and disruptive solutions to existing business models. The sector raised a record $3.6 billion of venture capital in 2015, with the FinTech sector accounting for almost a quarter of all investment raised by London-based tech companies.
However the impact of Blockchain is still underestimated by many in the financial services industry. PwC’s forthcomingGlobal Fintech survey polled 545 leading asset managers, FinTech businesses and key players in banks, fund transfer payment companies and insurers. Only 9% of asset managers are very familiar and just under 3 in 10 are not at all familiar with blockchain, the survey will say.
Welcoming the creation of the PwC Blockchain team, Ashley Unwin, PwC UK Executive Board member and UK and EMEA consulting leader, said blockchain technology could be the single greatest advance in the FinTech sector in a decade:
“Blockchain technology is worrying major players in the financial services industry as they don’t know where it will go or its potential to disrupt business models. However, in document delivery and settlement processing alone, it will offer significant cost reduction and efficiency gains.
“We are confident that these disruptive FinTech technologies will trigger a huge increase in demand for blockchain expertise and we intend to be a leader in exploiting these disruptive new technologies.”
- Scottish Blockchain Company Hypervine Signs with European Space Agency Data To Improve Efficiency And Transparency For The World’s Mining Industry - February 22, 2020
- Loyyal Signs Three Year Production Agreement with The Emirates Group for Use of Blockchain Loyalty and Rewards Platform - February 21, 2020
- Enjin Platform Enables Game Developers to Integrate Blockchain Assets Without Blockchain Coding Experience - February 18, 2020
- Blockchain Project Cashaa Protecting Crypto Companies to Survive Fifth Money Laundering Directive and New FCA Rules in 2020 - February 8, 2020
- US SEC Boss Hester Peirce Suggests Three Year “Safe Harbour Period” For Token Sales - February 6, 2020
- China’s Hyperchain Plans to Take on Coronavirus With Blockchain-Fueled Donation Platform - February 6, 2020
- Blockstack Proposes Using Bitcoin, Novel ‘Proof of Transfer’ To Accelerate A Truly User-Owned Web 3.0 - February 6, 2020
- Hack Blockchain To The MAX! €15.000 Prizepool at MAXathon in Berlin April 18-19, 2020 - February 6, 2020
- Chiliz And Enjin To Launch Blockchain Collectibles Using NFTs For The Likes of Juventus, Paris Saint-Germain, Atlético de Madrid and West Ham - February 6, 2020
- MIT Researchers Claim to Boost Bitcoin and Cryptocurrency Blockchain Transactions By 4x with New ‘Spider’ Routing Scheme - February 4, 2020
- Canada’s Blockchain Intelligence Group Signs USD$540,000 Contract with United States Feds - February 4, 2020
- The United States Marshals Services to Auction 4,040.54069820 Bitcoin – USD$37 Million - February 4, 2020
- OpenLegacy Project Gets $20m Strategic Investment from Japan’s SBI Holdings – Focus on Blockchain - February 4, 2020
- Fastest Growing and Highest Revenue Mobile Messenger App in the World, Japan’s LINE to Launch LINK Cryptocurrency - February 3, 2020
- Insolar to Launch MainNet on February 3, 2020 – Debuts Insolar’s New XNS Token - February 3, 2020
- Blockchain-Based Social Media App Vid with VI Tokens – To Launch April 1, 2020 – After VC $10 million USD Investment in 2019 - February 3, 2020
- UK FCA Licenses BCB Group as First Crypto Company to be Regulated as Authorised Payment Institution - January 31, 2020
- Virgil Griffith Pleads Innocent in Blockchain North Korea Event Case – Faces Up To 20 Years in Prison if Convicted - January 31, 2020
- University College London Centre for Blockchain Technologies Releases New Report on Supply Chains - January 31, 2020
- World’s Leading Research and Advisory Company Gartner Says Blockchain Smart Contracts Can Increase Corporate Overall Data Quality by 50 Percent - January 31, 2020