Revenue from blockchain platforms and services is expected to rise from $4bn in 2020 to a huge $199bn by 2030 as businesses seeking to accelerate digital transformation and development spend big on blockchain, says GlobalData, a leading data and analytics company.
Last year, GlobalData noted that businesses must make targeted, tactical digital transformation for companies to survive in the new world. However, the adoption of blockchain has lagged behind that of other emerging technologies. GlobalData's latest report, 'Thematic Research: Blockchain', notes that while blockchain has come a long way in recent years, it remains a nascent technology.
Nicklas Nilsson, Senior Analyst for Thematic Research at GlobalData, comments: 'It is easy to forget that blockchain has not been around for long due to the massive hype surrounding it. Businesses have been busy showboating the technology in lackluster and short-lived experiments in the last few years. Now this has given way to use cases focused on addressing actual problems, rather than just showing off, the technology can begin to rise to its true potential.'
Nilsson adds: 'Blockchain as a service holds the key to driving mainstream adoption of blockchain technology. It allows companies to experiment with blockchain applications without worrying about developing expensive in-house resources. Integrating blockchain into core technologies facilitates ease of use, making it a more attractive option for digital transformation efforts.'
The adoption of blockchain has lagged behind that of other emerging technologies. The reason is that few understand the technology.
Nilsson adds: 'Unless blockchain is simplified and perceived as a solution that can provide tangible benefits, it risks being left behind. Blockchain vendors need to take a more business-oriented approach to educate executives about the benefits of the technology. Blockchain projects with a clear business use case and measurable outcomes are more likely to be adopted. Good examples would be IBM's Food Trust network, the trade finance consortium eTradeConnect managed by the Hong Kong Monetary Authority, and the logistics and supply chain consortium TradeLens initiated by Maersk. COVID-19 has accelerated digital transformation, but executives face an abundance of technologies and must assess differing priorities.'
Not all blockchain projects are created equal. While enterprise blockchain projects are slowly moving past the hype, focusing on integration, tangible benefits, and addressing the shortcomings of the technology, the more decentralized world of blockchain continues to dream big. Buzzwords such as decentralized finance (DeFi), non-fungible tokens (NFTs) and decentralized digital identities (DIDs) frequently attract headlines.
Nilsson concludes: 'Although these buzzwords are all awash with hype and far from mainstream adoption, they come with a powerful value proposition and a desire to transform core market infrastructure.'