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Is This the Blockchain Firm That Will Get Enterprise to Finally Embrace Open Networks?

Concordium, whose CEO is a Volvo board member, is looking to shake up the seemingly glacial world of enterprise blockchain.

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Concordium, an ambitious project whose founders have close links to companies including Volvo, IKEA, Saxo Bank and Nasdaq, is looking to shake up the seemingly glacial world of enterprise blockchain. 

The most striking thing about Concordium, which launches its third testnet next month, is the way it pushes what was once anathema to big corporates: public and permissionless blockchains.

Businesses, wary of tipping their hands and giving away any competitive advantage, have traditionally preferred the idea of private and permissioned blockchains. But many advocates of blockchain tech believe only open systems hold true transformational promise. The oft-cited analogy centers on the relevance of internet versus intranet.  

Read more: ‘Boring Is the New Exciting’: How Baseline Protocol Connected With 600 Corporates

Toeing the line between the privacy requirements of regulated businesses and full-broadcast blockchains like those of Bitcoin and Ethereum has led some very smart people to opt for an attenuated architecture when it comes to distributed ledgers. 

However, Concordium is confident it has found a third way, keeping sensitive data private using a clever identity and zero-knowledge-proof (ZKP) system, providing firms with a safe, flexible option to deploy open blockchains.

The momentum around projects like Baseline Protocol, which now has some 600 big firms using it, is a solid indicator ZKP tech is ready for prime time.

‘Something totally new’

According to Concordium CEO Lone Fønss Schrøder, sometimes you need a permission-based ledger; but in order to realize new business models, it has to come in combination with baked-in permissionless possibilities. 

“I think that’s really what large corporations are looking for,” said Fønss Schrøder. “If you look at Hyperledger, for example, or R3, I don’t think it is blockchain in the sense of really providing something new. It’s not decentralized. Companies are seeing it as just another way to do their mainframe applications. But when you talk about permissionless blockchain, it’s something totally new.”

Blockchain today simply doesn’t meet the needs of corporations, says Fønss Schrøder, and a lack of permissionless flexibility has led to no uptick in business adoption. 

Concordium’s chief marketing manager, Beni Issembert, went further: Businesses underwhelmed by today’s enterprise blockchain offerings are squarely in Concordium sights.

“Businesses that are open-minded feel a lot of frustration and desolation when it comes to using Hyperledger and R3 Corda. And we are talking to those disappointed businesses,” Issembert said.

lone-fonns-schroder
Concordium CEO Lone Fønss Schrøder
Source: Concordium

Big-name partners

It would be easy to write Concordium off as some kind of naive newcomer – both R3 and Hyperledger declined to comment on the Concordium white paper. 

But the project, which has its roots in Denmark, features an impressive cast of players from business and academia. On the science side, Concordium’s research center at Denmark’s Aarhus University is run by widely cited cryptographer Ivan Damgard. Last September, Torben Pryds Pedersen, creator of the Pedersen Commitment cryptographic primitive, was appointed as Concordium’s CTO.

Read more: Staying Alive: Why the World of Enterprise Blockchain Has Turned to Collaborations

In terms of corporate clout, Fønss Schrøder is a boardroom director at IKEA, vice chairman of Volvo and spent 22 years at A.P. Moller Maersk. Concordium’s founder, Lars Seier Christensen, founded Saxo Bank in 1992, while the blockchain’s advisers include former Danish Prime Minister Anders Fogh Rasmussen, and heavy hitters from Nasdaq, Mastercard and Skype.

It’s one thing to announce a paradigm shift in the way businesses intend to use blockchain technology, but another to show hard evidence of this new permissionless demand. 

“We are already in contact with those people [Volvo and IKEA] and looking at ways to fulfill what they would like to do. But we are not only targeting 20 or 40 businesses,” said Issembert. “We are focused on the next generation of commerce, the new unicorns; firms that you don’t have to convince the best approach is an open system.”

Open use cases

It should be pointed out that Volvo has blazed a trail when it comes to tracking the minerals used in electric car batteries with the help of Hyperledger Fabric. IKEA has also done some interesting blockchain experiments with the likes of Tradeshift using the Maker protocol. 

Neither Volvo nor IKEA would confirm to CoinDesk whether they were testing Concordium at this time.

Read more: IKEA in ‘World First’ Transaction Using Smart Contracts and Licensed E-Money

If large corporations have been mostly happy with proofs-of-concept using closed enterprise blockchains, what are the new use cases that open systems like Concordium can offer? 

Fønss Schrøder said a major opportunity exists in rethinking the way procurement and supply chains work, for example. (In terms of new entrants to the enterprise blockchain space, there have also been some interesting moves from the EOS ecosystem, particularly in Latin America.)

“It could be smart contracts, which actually will function as marketplaces for you and your whole procurement sector,” said Fønss Schrøder. “I think about what Maersk has been doing, but the disadvantage for Maersk is that this should never have been built on a permission-based blockchain; it should have been permissionless. But that’s the kind of logistical use case I’m sure we will be able to support.”

Volvo board member Fønss Schrøder also sees plenty of uses for open blockchains in the car industry, across secondary markets, for instance, and the service agreements that come with that.

“Nearly every car sold by Volvo has some kind of lease arrangement or car-care, and blockchain is well suited to support this on the insurance side and on the service side,” said Fønss Schrøder.

Public, but private

As far as the ZKP secret sauce, Issembert called this the “backbone of the network,” but could not disclose details.

“For the ZKP design approach, we are going to come to the market with our own solution. It’s not something that has been seen yet,” he said.

Read more: WATCH: ‘Big Four’ Exec Says Privacy Is Key to Enterprise Blockchain Adoption

Next month sees Concordium’s third testnet come into being, with a view to going live in January 2021. 

“We will have the smart contract layer ready and then we will see which corporations will build on it,” said Fønss Schrøder. “It will be very interesting. I don’t think we will disappoint you.”

Disclosure

The leader in blockchain news, CoinDesk is a media outlet that strives for the highest journalistic standards and abides by a strict set of editorial policies. CoinDesk is an independent operating subsidiary of Digital Currency Group, which invests in cryptocurrencies and blockchain startups.

Source: https://www.coindesk.com/concordium-permissionless-enterprise-blockchain

Blockchain

TomoChain Launches LuaSwap: Attempts to Fight High ETH Gas Fees

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Ever since last summer, the DeFi space is booming. The total value locked in various protocols has surged to more than $24 billion, up some 4000% in less than a year. But there’s one challenge that many believe is hampering the further growth of the space – sky-high ETH gas fees.

The Booming DeFi Space

The massive increase in popularity of decentralized finance (DeFi) led to the creation of hundreds of projects, each one battling to garner the user’s trust. One of the more successful ones is Uniswap – an automated market maker and a decentralized exchange for ERC20 tokens. This, however, created an issue.

Ethereum’s suffering from congestion: with so many apps and people using the network, gas fees are high and transactions can be slow. In fact, gas fees have been so high lately that many started to question whether DeFi is actually only profitable for larger holders.

TomoChain proposes a solution to this with its Proof of Stake Voting (PoSV) consensus algorithm which incentivizes all token holders to be active in staking across a network of over 150 Masternodes. In essence, the goal is to help Ethereum’s network function more efficiently.

Enters LuaSwap

Put simply, LuaSwap is a coin-swapping platform which enables users to trade various cryptocurrencies. The main benefit of using it compared to other similar solutions such as Uniswap or SushiSwap, for instance, is that it’s cheap – it runs on TomoChain, not on Ethereum.

The promise is for near-zero gas fees and quicker transactions thanks to the 2-second block confirmation and the ability of TomoChain to handle up to 2,000 transactions per second.

It’s worth noting that the fees on Ethereum’s network have been so high lately, that they’ve eclipsed Bitcoin’s network by a factor of 3x. Over the past seven days alone, Ethereum saw around $10 million in fees, while Bitcoin’s network – only about $3 million. Interestingly enough, Uniswap’s V2 lines up third with $2.4 million in weekly fees.

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Source: https://cryptopotato.com/tomochain-launches-luaswap-attempts-to-fight-high-eth-gas-fees/

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Blockchain

Polkadot, Ethereum Classic, Maker Price Analysis: 27 December

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Polkadot moved below its $16.05-support level, with its indicators highlighting more bearishness for the price over the coming trading sessions. Other altcoins such as Ethereum Classic and Maker moved within fixed channels on their charts and awaited further cues from market leaders BTC and ETH.

Polkadot [DOT]

Source: DOT/USD, TradingView

The world’s fourth-largest cryptocurrency, Polkadot was trading at $15.7, at press time, down by 8.6% in 24 hours. The fall was a sign of the selling pressure that gripped the market since the price was unable to break above the $18.9-resistance. On the charts, the candlesticks moved below the 20-SMA (yellow) and 50-SMA (blue) and signaled a bear market for DOT. Moreover, the indicators suggested that the bearish momentum was on the up and that the price could move lower on the charts.

The Awesome Oscillator’s red bars rose in length below zero and so did the red bars on the MACD’s histogram.

Ethereum Classic [ETC]

Source: ETC/USD, TradingView

Ethereum Classic moved rangebound between $7.74 and $7.06 as a lack of strong momentum prevented a breakout in either direction. Low trading volumes and limited buying activity also accentuated the crypto’s recent price action. An extended bearish scenario could see the price fall below its immediate support level and move towards the $6.2-support. On the other hand, a bullish outcome would see the price rise towards the $8.3-resistance level.

The Relative Strength Index stabilized just above the oversold zone and outlined the bearish nature of the crypto’s price.

The Chaikin Money Flow suggested that capital inflows into the market were beginning to recover on the charts.

Maker [MKR]

Source: MKR/USD, TradingView

Maker was trading within a channel of $1,490.60 and $1,325.90, at press time, continuing its trend over the past five days. While it looked like the bears were about to flip the press time support, some bullish activity was recorded in the last trading session. However, a further pullback in the broader market could see the price head lower towards $1,153.4, while a bullish scenario could see a rise towards the immediate resistance.

The Bollinger Bands suggested low volatility in the price as the bands were compressed.

Finally, the Awesome Oscillator was bearish-neutral, but the momentum was weak.

Source: https://ambcrypto.com/polkadot-ethereum-classic-maker-price-analysis-27-december

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Blockchain

Chainlink Price Analysis: 27 January

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Disclaimer: The findings of the following analysis are the sole opinions of the writer and should not be taken as investment advice

Chainlink‘s price was highlighting the promise of a surge, one that could range anywhere between 18% to 40% over the next month. This surge will be pivotal to the project’s prospective listing by the Grayscale Investment company. It should be noted though that while the rumor got some credibility recently, Grayscale hasn’t announced the listing of these assets yet.

At press time, LINK was trading at $21.42 with a market cap of $8.6 billion, with the altcoin ranked the seventh-largest cryptocurrency on CoinGecko. After recording a 3.2% surge over the previous week, the oracle platform token might be witness to yet another surge soon.

Chainlink 6-hour chart

Source: LINKUSD TradingView

The attached chart highlighted that Chainlink was in a massive bearish ascending parallel channel pattern. The price got close to hitting the upper trendline, but failed after two tries. However, these attempts were what pushed LINK past its previous ATH and towards the new ATH at $25.8. Since hitting the new ATH, LINK’s price has seen a pullback down towards the lower trendline of the parallel channel, where it stood at press time.

Not only was the price being supported by the lower trendline of the channel, but the short-length EMA [yellow] was also preventing the price’s collapse. Hence, the price seemed to be primed for a bounce.

Adding more credibility to this bounce were the RSI and the Stochastic RSI, with both underlining a dip towards the oversold zone and loss of downward momentum. Finally, the MACD indicator was well below zero on the 6-hour chart, showing no signs of heading higher.

Conclusion

Overall, LINK’s price looked bearish on the charts, but considering the aforementioned supports, the bullish scenario also makes sense. There are two scenarios as to how the price could evolve.

In the first scenario, the price will bounce from the lower trendline of the channel or the mid-length EMA [blue] and head higher. This uptrend will have the potential to push the price up by 18% to 40% to $25.8 and $30.8, from where the price stood at press time.

A continuation of the downtrend after closing below the lower trendline would push the price down to $19.4 or $18.2, a development that would mean a 10% to 15% drop from the press time price.

Source: https://ambcrypto.com/chainlink-price-analysis-27-january

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