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Exploring DLT and Blockchain for Alternative Finance – A Collection of Case Studies

by EUROCROWD on 12.11.2019

Brussels/Malaga. 12 November 2019 – The European Crowdfunding Network today published a first report on the use of DLT and blockchain for alternative finance during the global blockchain conference Convergence in Malaga.

The ECN report Exploring DLT and Blockchain for Alternative Finance – A Collection of Case Studies provides an overview of various case studies showcasing how distributed ledger technology (DLT) and blockchain (hereafter jointly referred to as BDLT) are currently used in the alternative finance sector.  We explore the state of the art by understanding challenges and opportunities and highlight common characteristics with the aim to leverage the potential of BDLT technologies in the alternative finance sector.  This will support different target groups of the sector, namely crowdfunding platforms, investors, startups, SMEs, and policymakers to better understand blockchain empowered use cases, with a special emphasis on the alternative finance sector.

The report shares conclusions from desk research, interviews, two conferences and a workshop organized on the topic. The interviews consisted of semi-guided, qualitative interviews with market and technology experts and SMEs, who have experience in BDLT-based products and services. To understand the ways in which blockchain can most effectively be used for alternative finance we clustered our results into the following use cases:

  • BDLT for online payment and identity services
  • BDLT for peer-to-peer investing and investment services
  • BDLT for financial democratization

For the sake of simplicity, we refer to a well understandable explanation from the European Commission:
“Blockchain is the best-known distributed ledger technology. A ledger is a database which keeps a final and definitive record of transactions. Records, once stored, cannot be tampered without leaving behind a clear track. Blockchain enables a ledger to be held in a network across a series of nodes, which avoids one centralised location and the need for intermediaries’ services. This is particularly helpful for providing trust, traceability and security in systems that exchange data or assets. There is a lot of potential for blockchain to be used in many different areas such as financial services, supply chains or healthcare.”

ECN is also a partner in Blockpool, which ECN initiated in 2018 and which got funding form the European Commission in 2019.