GovCoin Systems Working on Blockchain Social Welfare Payments Distribution Trial for UK’s Department for Work and Pensions

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GovCoin Systems Limited has been named as the London-headquartered financial technology company trialling new technology to support government aims in the distribution of benefits.

Speaking at the Payments Innovation Conference 2016 on 4 July, Minister for Welfare Reform at the Department for Work and Pensions Lord Freud highlighted the ongoing trial saying,

“We have been working with GovCoin Systems (and their partners, Barclays, RWE npower and University College London) for this trial. Claimants are using an app on their phones through which they are receiving and spending their benefit payments. With their consent, their transactions are being recorded on a distributed ledger to support their financial management.”

The key to the proof-of-concept trial, which commenced in June, is to develop a secure and effective technology that users adopt and use to handle payments.

Robert Kay, Chief Executive Officer, GovCoin Systems Limited, said:

 GovCoin Systems brought together a team with deep expertise in core financial services infrastructure and global transaction services to build a platform with the potential to improve people’s lives. This proof-of-concept is the first concrete stage in that journey. We believe in a flexible, open and collaborative approach and are already working effectively with Barclays and RWE npower to develop creative answers to the complex problems faced.”

Jeremy Wilson, Vice Chairman, Corporate Banking at Barclays, said,

“This initiative focuses on adding an additional layer of richer data and identity onto payments, so that a deeper and more effective relationship can be established between the government and claimants. We are keen to see how the positive potential of this service develops and adds to our wider efforts to explore the uses of distributed ledger technology.”

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About Richard Kastelein

Founder and publisher of industry publication Blockchain News (EST 2015), a partner at ICO services collective Token.Agency ($750m+ and 90+ ICOs and STOs), director of education company Blockchain Partners (Oracle Partner) – Vancouver native Richard Kastelein is an award-winning publisher, innovation executive and entrepreneur. He sits on the advisory boards of some two dozen Blockchain startups and has written over 1500 articles on Blockchain technology and startups at Blockchain News and has also published pioneering articles on ICOs in Harvard Business Review and Venturebeat. Irish Tech News put him in the top 10 Token Architects in Europe.

Kastelein has an Ad Honorem - Honorary Ph.D. and is Chair Professor of Blockchain at China's first Blockchain University in Nanchang at the Jiangxi Ahead Institute of Software and Technology. In 2018 he was invited to and attended University of Oxford's Saïd Business School for Business Automation 4.0 programme.  Over a half a decade experience judging and rewarding some 1000+ innovation projects as an EU expert for the European Commission's SME Instrument programme as a startup assessor and as a startup judge for the UK government's Innovate UK division.

Kastelein has spoken (keynotes & panels) on Blockchain technology in Amsterdam, Antwerp, Barcelona, Beijing, Brussels, Bucharest, Dubai, Eindhoven, Gdansk, Groningen, the Hague, Helsinki, London (5x), Manchester, Minsk, Nairobi, Nanchang, Prague, San Mateo, San Francisco, Santa Clara (2x), Shanghai, Singapore (3x), Tel Aviv, Utrecht, Venice, Visakhapatnam, Zwolle and Zurich.

He is a Canadian (Dutch/Irish/English/Métis) whose writing career has ranged from the Canadian Native Press (Arctic) to the Caribbean & Europe. He's written occasionally for Harvard Business Review, Wired, Venturebeat, The Guardian and Virgin.com, and his work and ideas have been translated into Dutch, Greek, Polish, German and French. A journalist by trade, an entrepreneur and adventurer at heart, Kastelein's professional career has ranged from political publishing to TV technology, boatbuilding to judging startups, skippering yachts to marketing and more as he's travelled for nearly 30 years as a Canadian expatriate living around the world. In his 20s, he sailed around the world on small yachts and wrote a series of travel articles called, 'The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Seas' travelling by hitching rides on yachts (1989) in major travel and yachting publications. He currently lives in Groningen, Netherlands where he's raising three teenage daughters with his wife and sailing partner, Wieke Beenen.

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