A new study from Juniper Research has found that IBM is regarded as having the strongest credentials in the blockchain sector, well ahead of competitors with the Blockchain technology leaders being Microsoft and Accenture.
Almost 400 company founders, executives, managers and IT leaders responded to Juniper’s Blockchain Enterprise Survey. Amongst enterprises either actively considering, or in the process of deploying blockchain technology, more than 4 in 10 (43%) ranked IBM first – more than twice the proportion selecting second-placed Microsoft (20%).
According to the study, the findings reflect IBM’s high-profile R&D engagement with initiatives such as Hyperledger and its extensive list of blockchain clients across an array of key verticals and use cases, including banking, asset tracking and the music industry.
Amongst respondents who were prepared to state their levels of investment in blockchain, more than two-thirds (67%) stated they had already invested more than US $100,000 by the end of 2016, while 91% of these companies confirmed that they would be spending at least this amount in 2017. The study stated that this suggested most initial investments had delivered results that were sufficiently encouraging for companies to pursue more extensive trials and/or integrations.
However, the accompanying report urged companies to focus on private blockchains for commercial deployments, rather than utilise public chains such as Bitcoin. It argued that most corporate applications would require the capability to restrict access to permissioned users, while companies would also need to have a degree of control over the development of the blockchain on which their systems have become dependent.
According to research author Dr Windsor Holden, “Even if companies conduct initial testing using a public blockchain, in most cases the shortcomings of these chains should disqualify them from many use cases, including financial settlement, public sector deployments, logistics and land registry.”