Blockchain

Blockchain has the potential to disrupt industries, businesses and business models. Organisations, however, continue to ask - “What is blockchain?” and “What does it mean to us?”

Blockchain technology, which first emerged as the backbone of bitcoin in 2009, is heralded as the most important innovation since the Internet itself. Post the advent of the Bitcoin, there has been a flurry of advancements, new use cases, and applications of blockchain technology. While a lot has been said about what can be done with blockchain, very little has been done in applying it to solve real world problems. Organizations and their executives are confused either about what blockchain is or whether they need the blockchain. In addition to answering these questions PwC, with its strong background in consulting across industries can help you in preparing a comprehensive roadmap for the adoption of blockchain in your organization and implementing the same. With our experience in building innovative blockchain applications for several industries, we are in the right place to help you with background in consulting all your blockchain needs.

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What does blockchain mean to you?

Everyone in the market believes that blockchain will revolutionise every business model, from pharma to airlines; entertainment & media to oil & gas; from insurance to the government sector. But does your industry really need blockchain? Are you equipped with the necessary infrastructure to support a blockchain application? What do your peers think about it? Take a few minutes to complete our Blockchain Fitness Assessment and find the answers for yourself.

Take our Blockchain Fitness Assessment

Experience Blockchain Studio

While the internet changed the way we communicate, blockchain revolutionised how we exchange value between multiple untrusted parties. The Blockchain Studio draws on the components of blockchain such as cryptography, consensus and smart contracts to help your organisation in building a blockchain application, end­-to-­end.

Stay ahead of the pack

Stay ahead of the pack

PwC’s platform can deliver proprietary blockchain content, insights, and research in real time, as well as provide access to a dedicated team of subject matter experts. Our Innovation Workshops bring executives, product owners, risk and regulatory specialists, business unit leaders, startups/emerging blockchain companies, and strategy influencers together in interactive workshops to explore solutions for real­time business issues.

Marketplace Strategy

Marketplace Strategy

PwC analyses existing front-to-back operating models, along with the external landscape, in order to determine the best ways to utilise blockchain within your organisation. PwC can also provide a comprehensive product strategy assessment and go-to-market strategy.

Organisational Readiness

Organisational Readiness

PwC will design a customised proof-of-value-test that demonstrates the viability of the technology while providing a mechanism to measure business impact. Every model we propose will address all aspects of a blockchain infrastructure, including organisation/governance, end-to-end business process, and platform capabilities.

Execution Support

Execution Support

Ultimately, any solution, no matter how prescient, is only as good as its execution. This is where PwC excels—by offering proven expertise in managing complex implementation programs from start to finish, including solution development, testing and implementation, PMO and product manager support, and third party vendor integration.

The PwC Advantage

Gaming

Enterprises today are spread across geographical locations and invest heavily on managing their transactions. A single source of truth, traceable yet immutable is a challenge. This leads to issues such as fraud, difficulty in accomplishing audits and tracking the movement of assets through the organisation.

Current Services to be Impacted: 

Our blockchain looks to disintermediate your existing database by adding blockchain functionalities such as immutability, the transfer of digital assets and decentralised control. It also incorporates rich permissioning at the transaction level to ensure selective access.

What blockchain can do for you?

  1. Ensure a single source of the truth
  2. Enable easy and quick audits 
  3. Allow for rich querying and a clearly visible audit trail

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Entertainment & Media

Production houses today see their margins dwindling in the face of video-on- demand services. They see a substantial chunk of their revenues being paid in the form of commission to Subscription Video-On- Demand (SVOD) services. SVOD operators today negotiate from a position of strength, with their power arising from the huge number eyeballs on their online viewership platforms. This has meant that movie houses are forced to route their original content through SVOD operators. 

Current Services to be Impacted:

Our Unified Viewership platform (UVP) looks to solve the content distribution problems faced by the entertainment & media industry. The UVP is based on the blockchain and is tamper proof, cryptographically secured and self-healing. Such a system would encourage both customers and content creators (major labels and studios) to adopt this decentralised consensus-based system.

What do you stand to gain from Blockchain?

  1. Direct-to- Customer: Deal directly with customer, thereby building trust and relationships with them. This would help to negotiate from a position of strength with SVOD operators, thereby improving margins and opening up new streams of revenue
  2. Piracy Prevention: Reduce the cost of delivery, thereby reducing the burden on the customer to purchase original content. Also, secure the content cryptographically through content fingerprinting.

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Pharma

With an aggressive growth rate of 15 % to 20 %, the pharma industry in India is poised to become a major global market. This growth can be, in part, attributed to a huge population that is upwards of one billion. Drug counterfeiting is a major issue that affects the industry and can have catastrophic consequences if not tackled in a comprehensive manner. While pharma companies have realised the importance of delivering authentic medicine to customers and a robust regulatory framework is in place to tackle drug counterfeiting, achieving drug serialisation is very difficult.

Current Services to be Impacted: 

In a value chain comprising of manufacturers, distributors, retailers, regulators and customers, maintaining a single version of the truth can be quite a challenge. Our blockchain solution can help each of the above stakeholders build a collaborative future enabling patient safety and regulatory adherence by ensuring a chain-of-custody log at the individual drug or product level at every point in the value chain.

What do you stand to gain from our solution?

  1. Increased compliance with Regulatory rules
  2. Documentation and visibility available at every step in the Supply Chain.
  3. Better control over the last mile for any drug re-calls, usage and spurious drugs.
  4. Not very cost intensive. Easy to integrate with existing SCM solutions
  5. Increased Brand value and positioning in market
  6. Real-time feedback on drug movement.
  7. Consumers/patients get correct information regarding the drug.

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Automotive

The automotive industry consists of a very complex supply chain consisting of multiple stakeholders. Provenance of automotive parts in an ecosystem consisting of multiple players is very hard to track, especially with each player having their own version of the truth. 

Current Services to be Impacted: 

  • Provenance of auto parts
  • Recalling of vehicles
  • Supply chain management

What can the blockchain do for you?

  1. The Trust is established and no authority "owns” provenance is enabled
  2. Recalls of the units are "specific" due to easy traceability rather than cross fleet 
  3. Enhanced supply chain security (reduction of fraud)
  4. Reduction in bottlenecks (certification by 3rd parties) 
  5. Reduction of errors (no more paper-based documentation)
  6. Increased efficiency

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Insurance

The insurance value chain is characterised by the slow processing of claims and delays in payouts. The complicated network of insurers and reinsurers has resulted in an unwieldy system that relies on the manual processing of claims resulting in a very bad experience for customers.

Current Services to be Impacted:

We believe blockchain will play a major and disruptive role across the insurance value chain. Our solution adds value at important processes across the Insurance Value chain, enabling auto-approvals and quick processing through smart-contracts. Additionally, it helps resolve issues around customer on-boarding and ‘Know Your Customer’ (KYC) requirements, also leading to quicker claims processing and adjudication.

What the blockchain can do for you:

  1. More of client processes 
  2. Improved pricing and risk management 
  3. Enhanced trust via better claims experience 
  4. Greater financial inclusion 
  5. Demand for new insurance products and services 
  6. Use of new ‘smart’ contract models. 

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Consumer Goods

While we use consumer products day in and day out, consumers know very little about the products journey, which largely remains unseen. However today with growing awareness consumers what to know all about their products for instance if the foodstuff they use is really organic?

Current Services to be Impacted:

Our blockchain solution provides series of unprecedented breakthroughs that can help the manufacturing company as well as the public in disseminating public-interest information, such as in the case of supply chains of consumer products. By using blockchain, we offer a piece-meal adoption model, helping organisations to scale as adoption increases.

What Blockchain can do for you?

  1. Authentic traceability through immutability 
  2. Information retrieval in a simple manner 
  3. Audit capabilities: handle changing regulations through smart contracts 

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Blockchain 101

What is Blockchain?

A blockchain is a cryptographic, or encoded ledger comprising a digital log of transactions shared across a public or private network.

What exactly does blockchain do?

As a peer-­to-­peer network combined with a distributed time-­stamping server, blockchain databases can be managed autonomously. There’s no need for a separate administrator. In effect, the users are the administrators.

Blockchain consulting

Strategists guide to blockchain

The distributed ledger technology that started with bitcoin is rapidly becoming a crowdsourced system for all types of verification.

Blockchain and trade finance

The advent of blockchain technology is on the verge of revolutionising trade finance—and it threatens to leave behind any financial services company that doesn’t move with the times.

Blockchain in gaming

In the midst of a large transformation of the core casino management system, the CIO challenged PwC to use the most modern and future proof technologies to secure and enable the banking functions within the “Cage”. The challenge included a multi-country deployment with the need to operate both on premise and in the cloud. PwC provided a strategic blockchain based architecture, custom software development and devops delivery of a blockchain based vaulting system.

The approach included a strategic architecture developed by PwC to support the future needs of protecting data and creating an immutable record of transactions for audit and fraud investigation purposes. Technology selection criteria was also developed to allow foradditional technology needs such as multi-sig encryption and data hashing.

The solution provided a lightweight and seamless way for the casino to store and analyse all financial transactions. If fraud were to exist, this vault solution would give an irrefutable record of what had happened which could be used in forensics or investigative processes.

Blockchain technology in sustainability

Paris Agreement targets to keep global warming to 1.5°C above pre-industrial level. Carbon pricing is a way to incentivise carbon emission reduction. This includes carbon trading and offsetting, and carbon tax. More carbon pricing initiatives, including carbon trading and offsetting schemes, are being implemented worldwide.

Key improvements for current initiatives:

  1. Government burden to track the registry (compliance data) and transaction log (trading data).
  2. Potential fraud in double-counting of carbon assets.
  3. Lack of transparency in the market environment for investors & emitters.

BETS uses blockchain as back end technology to decentralise the authority to view, update and validate carbon asset movements. The product is being developed by the China Ventures core team, with technology build support from the SDC.

Full working prototype built and tested. We developed functional requirements for OTC solution with demonstrated advantages:

  • Automated: Smart contracts can automatically issue fines when emission levels exceed allowances.
  • Secure: Encrypted transactions are immutable and validated by all participants.
  • Transparency: Registry and transaction log data are integrated and visible to all participants.
  • Decentralised: Able to conduct direct peer-to-peer transactions (OTC trading) without intermediation.
Blockchain in insurance

As part of the London Market Modernisation programme, insurance firms that participate in the London Wholesale Insurance Markets are exploring technology innovations that can transform the market. 

Our approach included:

  1. Successfully created the concept of placing the ‘claim on chain’ in 6 weeks
  2. Use of design workshops with insurance industry experts to identify problems and define solutions
  3. Took a convoluted area like claims and broke it down via Blockchain key features, while ensuring transparency
  4. From use case to working software within 6 weeks

PwC facilitated two workshops with brokers, claims experts, and third party administrators where they identified a number of painful processes. An area of claims management was selected for the proof of concept due to its slow and error-prone nature with multiple parties involved. The workshop generated a design that was developed into a PoC and delivered in 6 weeks using Monax.

Contact us

Ashootosh Chand

Partner, Digital Services PwC India, PwC India

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