Osmin Callis: How nChain can promote global trade with Bitcoin SV

nChain is the London-based research powerhouse behind Bitcoin SV (BSV). Its mission is to “ignite global adoption and enterprise-level usage of Bitcoin.” To make that happen, nChain has set up a professional services unit to reach out to businesses and encourage them to design and implement blockchain projects, with Osmin Callis as its Business Development Manager.

While the company’s engineering team are responsible for developing the node software for BSV and the additional components that would allow businesses to connect to its blockchain, the research department develops nChain’s intellectual property portfolio—which is probably the largest in the world for open blockchain, Osmin says.

Then Osmin’s professional services team take the research output to work with businesses, commercialising the company’s intellectual property portfolio. “We have this treasure trove of ideas, of possible future applications,” Osmin says, “Things which are disruptive, which change the way we understand areas of technology that we take for granted today.”

When working with businesses, Osmin says, they have learnt to go easy on the tech discussions: “Experience has shown us that it’s of less value to talk about some of the more granular features of the technology in front of someone’s who’s responsible for making business decisions. It’s really about making sure the message fits the audience.”

Osmin says that nChain is in it for “the long game” and so while a meeting may not immediately result in a project, “Hopefully it’s contributed to the betterment of the ecosystem. If we’re too aggressive in trying to capture market share, it’s not necessarily to the benefit of all.”

One piece of conventional wisdom that nChain fights against it the idea that private blockchains are appropriate for enterprise while public blockchains are best for government or other entities. But “it’s really not as straightforward as that,” Osmin says. nChain believes BSV is always the best solution and the idea that enterprises can take “baby steps” by embarking on a private blockchain project may prove to be a waste of time and money. “In the long term, we know we’re all going to end up connecting on the same medium—the same blockchain.”

One advantage for a business of moving straight to the public blockchain is that if it wants to move from data to payments, then the currency aspect is already built into BSV, instead of having to be “bolted on” to a private blockchain.

In the immediate future, Osmin’s team is focussing on two sectors: financial services and online gaming—whether gambling or platform games. In financial services, “we’ve been getting a lot of interest from central banks” in Europe and West Africa. Some of these have “expressed a significant interest in the possibility of creating their own digital currency, using a base currency such as Bitcoin SV.” With a system utilising their own protocol on BSV, a bank would be able to control the money supply “in exactly the same way as they would do today.”

If this all goes according to plan, nChain will be contributing to fostering and promoting global trade. “The ramifications …are many and varied and I think it’s exciting because we have yet to discover what all of those things will be and what it’ll bring.”

Hear the full interview with Osmin Callis on this week’s CoinGeek Conversations podcast:

You can also watch the podcast video on YouTube.

Please subscribe to CoinGeek Conversations – this is episode 28 of a weekly podcast series. Just search for “CoinGeek Conversations” wherever you get your podcasts, subscribe on iTunes, listen on Spotify or visit the CoinGeek Conversations website.

What can’t you do on the blockchain?

What can’t you do on the blockchain?

Last year’s trade shows for crypto and blockchain were all about ICOs—initial coin offerings. This year, ICOs are out, says Richard Kastelein from Blockchain News. Instead there’s a new collection of financial products—which may or may not suffer the quickly deteriorating reputation of ICOs.

Perhaps more significant, today there are real use cases of blockchain being taken up by big business. Overall, Richard says we’re witnessing “Wall Street meets Main Street.” He points to Walmart’s requiring the adoption of a blockchain system by all its spinach and lettuce suppliers. And other retailers are following fast, Richard says: “that’s proof that this blockchain stuff works.” There are also projects to track diamonds and timber, to prove the claimed provenance of individual items. Supply chains are turning out to be the “most valid use cases” so far.

As to what will be next year’s trend, Richard predicts that it will tokenizing. He notes that Singapore Airlines have already tokenized their air miles system. And there’s potential for more tokenization in relation to loyalty programmes and brands: “how can you reward people that become ‘prosumers’ for you?”—the brand ambassadors. ‘Tokenomics’ is about “trying to achieve an end result and then gamifying the system to achieve that result.”

It’s a natural development for the Bitcoin blockchain, Richard says, because it’s the same principle that Satoshi used when devising the network: “This is what Satoshi did with Bitcoin as well: he created a way for people to be honest in the mining process and have a surefire way to let people create ledgers that can’t be challenged.”

Richard Kastelein was talking to CoinGeek as one of the exhibitors at the recent London Blockchain Expo. Another exhibitor was nChain, which also traces a direct line back to the vision of Satoshi Nakamoto, as a strong proponent of Bitcoin SV (Satoshi Vision). Osmin Callis, from nChain’s Professional Services department was pleased to find many of the big consultancies represented at the show: “We’ve been talking to PWC. We’d already had discussions with the blockchain strategic lead at Dell—we saw her again.” Overall, Osmin said she was “very optimistic …I think we’ve got some amazing possibilities open.”

But it wasn’t all mainstream stuff at Blockchain Expo: Sergio Rigert of Gingr, a Swiss startup, explained what his company is planning to do on the blockchain: “My business is revolutionising the oldest industry in the world, which is the prostitution industry.” Gingr will be the Uber or Airbnb of prostitution, Sergio says. Bookings will be made using the Gingr Coin. If you’re wondering whether the idea of an immutable ledger would be a selling point to clients of this particular kind of business, Sergio has reassurance to offer: “Your data won’t be exploited …we just have it in our system, which is separate, in a separate server, so when you actually do a transaction, you’re just getting a number.”

To hear more from Sergio, Richard and Osmin, listen to this week’s CoinGeek Conversations podcast, or watch on Youtube.

And please subscribe to CoinGeek Conversations – this is episode 17 of a weekly podcast series. Just search for “CoinGeek Conversations” wherever you get your podcasts, subscribe on iTunes, listen on Spotify or visit the CoinGeek Conversations website.