ThoughtMachine is a company launched by Paul Taylor, an ex-Google engineer who developed speech recognition software. With the announcement of the company comes its Vault OS product, which it believes will be the new operating system for banks. In its press release, it states that Vault OS is 100% future-proof, hugely flexible, and fixes broken banking forever.
IBM has launched a new platform, allowing for companies to use blockchain based record-keeping in their supply chains. Along with this announcement, Everledger, which allows companies to track diamonds, is going to be using the platform. Presently, diamond transactions rely on paper, which can be altered. The blockchain can prevent that.
Funderbeam, a company that allows early stage startup shares to be traded using the blockchain, announced its launch. It is founded by Sky co-founder Jaan Tallinn and Urmas Peiker. All investments on Funderbeam are tokenized, making them easy to trade, track, and secure. This allows investors in private companies to decide when they want to sell.
Phase one of OpenBazaar has been to launch the product and create a mechanism by which decentralized sales could take place. This next phase will remove the requirement for users to know how bitcoin works, improve search, strengthen security, and integration with IPFS, which will allow for 24/7 uptime for shops, a change from the present day.
IBM is opening a new location in Singapore focus on blockchain technology. The focus over the next three years is to create pilots based on the software targeting the finance and trade industries. Presently, trade finance is difficult, but with the blockchain, it could become significantly more streamlined.
Absa, a wholly owned subsidiary of Barclays Africa Group Limited, has opted to join R3's blockchain consortium. R3 has over 50 banks in its network around the world. This is a significant step because it is the first bank in Africa to join R3.
To compete with the Winklevoss ETF, SolidX Partners, a software services company specializing in the blockchain, announced that it was launching its own Bitcoin ETF. It will trade on the NYSE under ticker symbol XBTC. Initially, it plans to raise $1 million and it will offer insurance on all bitcoin it holds.