LendingCalc.com’s PUFIN Open Source Blockchain Tech May Be Marketplace Lending Answer

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In the wake of recent company shakeups and growing pains in the marketplace lending industry, the need for better transparency and industry tools for all participants has become a critical concern. PUFIN, an online and open source project to create free and global loan identifiers using blockchain technology, aims to deliver order and uniformity in a secure environment to the marketplace.

Recent entrants into the market are proposing systems that reserve the right to charge fees at any time. The idea of a free enticement that allows for charging fees later may be the basis for a slow or incomplete industry adoption of online loans.

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LendingCalc.com‘s Ben McMillan and Mike Mazier may have the open source answer: They have filed to patent a fee-free system to use blockchain technology to generate unique identifiers for loans in line with the US Treasury’s whitepaper “Opportunities and Challenges in Online Marketplace Lending.” The company is in the works to set up their system as an open source resource for the industry.

LendingCalc.com co-founder and PUFIN co-author Mike Mazier said:

“Marketplace lending is in a rapid growth stage, which will make reliable and widely adopted systems and standards essential. The need to uniquely identify loans compares to problems addressed by currently standard systems such as CUSIP, which has charged fees to license its identifiers for decades.”

“Anyone will be able to freely generate a unique 34-digit address and associate it with evidence of a financial instrument using the same blockchain technology that has been well demonstrated by Bitcoin,” Mazier said.

“We are hoping the industry will not be slowed down by for-pay or proprietary identifier systems, which could stifle innovation in this era of big data. We’re hoping to get around any resistance institutions might have by making ours both totally free and secure.”

The PUFIN project has been set up so that it can never be proprietary. (Learn more at pufin.org.) PUFIN licensing requires all uses of the license to be free of cost to all parties.

“PUFIN” stands for “Planetary Unique Financial Instrument Number” and was designed as a decentralized protocol to identify and track marketplace loans.

While built for marketplace lending, PUFIN can be used for any financial instrument. The system is patent-pending, open source and is based on blockchain technology. By fostering highly secure interoperability in online marketplace lending, PUFIN can help mature marketplace lending into a bona fide asset class.

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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