When you think of blockchain, you may think of cutting-edge FinTech startups setting up shop in the alleys of Silicon Valley or more random places like Baltimore and Cleveland. But some of the biggest companies on the globe are getting involved.
Here's our Thinknum data on the last few months of hiring for blockchain-related jobs, from data scientists to blockchain engineers. And look who's in there at #1?
It's Big Blue. Once derided as the stodgy remnant of the dinosaur era of computing, IBM ($IBM) appears to be evolving.
Last year, they launched a platform for Blockchain as a Service - they provide the cloud infrastructure for enterprises and organizations to run their own secure blockchain network. Based on the Linux Foundation's open source Hyperledger Fabric, IBM is trying to do for blockchain what it did for desktop PCs back in the 1990s - make them accessable and ubiquitous. They're also doing generalized blockchain education, through a ton of webcasts.
While it's not exactly as exciting as a multi-billion-valued cryptocurrency, it may be a whole lot more useful. "Across global supply chains, financial services, healthcare, government and many other industries, innovators are exploring ways to use blockchain to disrupt and transform traditional business models," writes Laura Gargolinski Jaeger at IBM's blockchain blog. "Many industry leaders have already achieved significant business benefits, including greater transparency, enhanced security, improved traceability, increased efficiency and speed of transactions, and reduced costs."
- IBM's market capitalization as of today: $142 billion.
- Bitcoin's valuation as of today: $170 billion.
One example: Just a couple of weeks ago IBM launched a startup with Danish shipping line Maersk ($PRIVATE:MAERSK) that will use blockchain to track global transport- and replace paper records with a permanent, tamper-proof digital data trail.
(Images from IBM)