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How Blockchain Is Enabling the New Era of Digital Financial Investments It truly is the era of digital financial investments, a scenario that is only going to grow as the years go by.

By AJ Agrawal Edited by Dan Bova

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.


Surely by now, you've heard about Blockchain technology, a digital ledger used to record financial transations. Because blockchain is accessible anywhere, any time, information recorded on it is public and verifiable -- making it a great way to manage finances. Although traditionally many companies have used banks and other traditional institutions for financing, blockchain technology has the potential to completely revolutionize the way they manage their financing.

Related: Just What the Heck Is Blockchain? Watch This Explainer Video.

Already, there are companies using blockchain. To learn more about some of them, take a look at the list below. It's the era of digital financial investments, and these companies are paving the way for change.

1. Zen Protocol

In the same way that Bitcoin uses blockchain for peer-to-peer money transactions, Zen Protocol is a platform on which you can trade peer-to-peer. What makes this possible? In part, it's this company's smart contracts, which hold escrow and enforcement agreements. Additionally, Zen Protocol is integrated, and can be merge-minded, with Bitcoin, which means that you can turn any smart contract into a Bitcoin smart contract.

To understand more about Zen and its integration with Bitcoin, take a look at this blog post. That way, you can learn all about Zen's parallel blockchain, which observes the Bitcoin network.

2. Primechain Technologies

One of the biggest positives of blockchain is that it enables transparency in transactions. So, thinking in terms of the problems associated with banks, with blockchain, you can more easily track traditional problems -- like money laundering.

This is why Primechain Technologies is making such a big difference. This company, based in India, serves banks throughout that country, so that its clients can implement blockchain solutions in anti-money laundering enforcement, cross-border payments, asset registry and syndication of loans. There's a lot of promise for blockchain to be used by banks in the future, for tasks like running background checks on clients with more efficacy.

Related: Why Bitcoin Is the MySpace of Cryptocurrencies, But the Blockchain Is Here to Stay

3. IBM

IBM is currently creating a blockchain technology that's going to be used by seven of Europe's largest banks, including HSBC, with the idea of facilitating international trade for small- and medium-sized enterprises. So, in addition to providing the kinds of solutions mentioned above for banks, Blockchain can also be used to track payments.

Basically, this new blockchain -- called Digital Trade Chain -- will be used to help parties track, manage and complete transactions internationally. When goods are sold, and the goods arrive at the address of the person who has bought them, the blockchain triggers a payment. This is much faster, and more accurate, than what we ordinarily use today.

4. Bitwage

Another important aspect of finance for any company is how it chooses to pay its employees. Especially for remote employees, a strategy becoming more and more popular, payments to locales all over the world can be costly, considering the typical automated process for paying wages: depositing money in an American bank account every month.

Luckily, Bitwage has come up with a solution. It's the world's first Bitcoin-based payroll service, which means that any employer will be able to avoid the costs associated with transferring money from one country to another, as well as the time required to complete the process. As Bitwage's founder Jonathan Chester, has explained, "You can actually see exactly where the money is throughout the process."

5. Chain Inc.

Finally, there's Chain Inc. This company works with financial markets -- those on Wall Street, for example -- to completely change their traditional ways of working with money. Basically, Chain Inc. is building a suite of blockchain-based technologies specifically for use by banks, stock exchanges and credit card companies. These technologies will enable these entities to move, store, trade and manage financial assets quickly. Additionally, these movements of assets will be moved securely and with a much lower risk to the system as a whole.

The company is already working with big players like Nasdaq, Citibank, Visa and Orange. Their participation and interest demonstrate just what a big difference blockchain technology can make. And it's no surprise. Chain Inc., according to its website, is "on a mission to enable a smarter and more connected financial system. We build the cryptographic ledgers that underpin breakthrough financial products and services."

As can be seen, blockchain technology has the potential to change the way that businesses work in the world, especially when it comes to financial technology. It truly is the era of digital financial investments, and this is only going to grow as the years go by. Soon, blockchain will be the expected minimum technology, required of any company that expects to be taken seriously by its customers and potential investors.

Related: 6 Reasons Why Blockchain is Worth Getting Excited About

Is your company considering using blockchain technology? For what purposes? Have any of the above companies inspired you to make a change in your use of digital finance technology?

AJ Agrawal

Founder of Verma Media

AJ Agrawal is the founder of Verma Media, a marketing agency that focuses on emerging tech, like blockchain and AI, and on cannabis companies.

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