blockchain trends in 2020

Blockchain trends in 2020 – Part 1

Picking the brains of the industry brightest minds

Getting closer to the end of 2019 we all do some kind of evaluation of how the year went and whether we have achieved the goals were set for ourselves or not.

Thinking about the past 12 months and reminiscing on some of the things that happened and the things we achieved I know that 2019 was an extra special year. Not only that I got the chance to marry the love of my life but also the Lime bunch (my extended family) got bigger, stronger and I’m happy to say we now have our first baby Lime (congrats Maggie and Nicky)!

From opening our London office, through getting ranked among the top blockchain solutions companies in the world for 3rd consecutive year, having the chance to work with one of the leading businesses in the world and learn from their leaders and last but not least be part of this vibrant, crazy blockchain community we love so much!

I got the chance to ask some of these friends of Lime, that also happened to be among the opinion makers in our small but cosy community, what 2019 brought them and what they expect that 2020 will bring. Although I know most of the people pretty well their answers still surprised me.

So let’s get started!

If you can describe the Blockchain & DLT space in 2019 in one word what would it be and why?


Expected.

Jamie Burke, Founder, and CEO of Outlier Ventures


BUIDL. While Gartner sees fit to put us squarely in their “valley of despair”, all the seeds of the climb back up the “slope of productivity” are in place now — maturing technology, thoughtful application of the tech to real-world problems that other tech just can’t solve well, and regulatory & market acceptance. The people I know building networks and realising value are perhaps either shy to talk about it or wish to avoid tempting fate, but deployments like the IBM Food Trust Network, Tradelens, People’s Bank of China’s trade finance network, and so many other unsung but value-producing deployments are signs that the headlines don’t always follow the real value creation.

Brian Behlendorf, Executive Director of Hyperledger


Practical. In 2019 we clearly saw the separation, that was just starting within 2018, between the cryptocurrencies trends and the practical use of blockchain. This was the year that enterprise blockchain had a practical approach from governments, auditors, regulators and horizontally from Tier-1 corporates across different industries to solve practical problems.

Evangelos Pappas, Founder & CEO of Ocyan


Disillusionment. We went from a year of POCs to a year of actual verification of what makes and doesn’t make sense. It is great to see but also meant a lot of promising projects might and have already faded.

Marta Piekarska-Geater, Director of Ecosystem at Hyperledger

What dynamics do you expect to see in the Blockchain & DLT space in 2020?


Market consolidation (M&A)
Middleware looking to onboard the 99% of developers
Beginnings of distribution channels for real demand of utility

Jamie Burke, Founder, and CEO of Outlier Ventures


It’ll get increasingly easier and easier for devs to build networks and deploy apps to them. Not only because improvements in Fabric 2.0 will make doing so easier, but the other enterprise blockchain frameworks (particularly Besu) are arriving with even better dev tooling support, and everyone from AWS to Azure are getting better at the Blockchain-as-a-Service thing.

Brian Behlendorf, Executive Director of Hyperledger


Next year is clearly a continuation of what happened in 2019; Blockchain has started moving away from the Innovation and CoE team and clearly being embedded into the digital transformation strategic roadmap. In addition, Blockchain consortia will make a clear commercial sense acting as an evolutionary step of the API Economy to a network-based ecosystem. And finally, we’ll start seeing exciting Blockchain cases that merge applications from the AI/ML world.

Evangelos Pappas, Founder & CEO of Ocyan


I believe it will a year of production. Everyone wants to see that blockchain is real and makes sense. There will be, hopefully, more products build with the usage of blockchain and less just white papers and evaluation studies

Marta Piekarska-Geater, Director of Ecosystem at Hyperledger

Who do you expect to be the ones that will dominate the Blockchain space and push it forward in 2020? Why? (e.g. the big tech companies, enterprise sector, startups or even governments)

 


Stacks. Protocols with growth in supporting middleware will form into stacks to abstract away complexity.

Jamie Burke, Founder, and CEO of Outlier Ventures


I can’t pick winners 🙂 but I’m sincere when I think that we won’t see “domination” somewhat inherently because of the nature of blockchain tech. But there will be breakout startups (Everledger, BondEValue, you guys?) and larger tech companies who will compound their current lead in the market. But they’ll all be desperate for government involvement as most use cases require them at least as regulators and probably as market participants.

Brian Behlendorf, Executive Director of Hyperledger


2019 was China and Libra year. The trade war that is taking place had a good reflection also in the blockchain market, and this tells a lot. So for the next year, we estimate that the APAC market and small-state countries will start dominating the adoption in the market with more practical use-cases. In other words, blockchain innovation will test the agileness of each market and governments to shift their legacy model to more circular and network-based economies. As clear winners, we see manly startups in the EU market to make a difference and expand to the East to cover the adoption demand. As a follow-up, the EU is having a closer look at practical cases of blockchain within a broader strategy of innovation around 5G and AI.

Evangelos Pappas, Founder & CEO of Ocyan


I don’t know. I think that, as usual, it will be a mix. Blockchain does enable startups to shine. Much more than other technologies. So more protocol layer players, more startups, but the big tech and enterprises will not want to stay behind. Governments are an interesting question: I think there is a lot of interest from that sector, but we will need to wait a while before the projects crystalize.

Marta Piekarska-Geater, Director of Ecosystem at Hyperledger

What’s your one prediction for 2020?


Institutional money will begin to enter through indices and ETFs based on fundamentals that will begin to see a bluechip crypto asset class break away from BTC / ALTs narrative

Jamie Burke, Founder, and CEO of Outlier Ventures


Blockchain-based digital identity wallets (using Hyperledger Indy or at least the standards it implements) will find large consumer deployments for the first time.

Brian Behlendorf, Executive Director of Hyperledger


In 2020 we’ll see the first “killer app” of blockchain, and this will be in the Identity space. Once this happens, the world will see a new “internet”.

Evangelos Pappas, Founder & CEO of Ocyan


That global warming and the climate crisis will be a topic of the year 😉

Marta Piekarska-Geater, Director of Ecosystem at Hyperledger


This started as a modest endeavour to pick the brains of several people we consider knowledgable and are always on the pulse of the market. What happened next was pure magic and we are grateful for the time and insides!

We will continue this post with more of the top names in the blockchain space in Part 2 of Blockchain Trends in 2020 where will join me Nikola Stojanow of Aeternity Ventures, Matt Cutler of Blocknative, Gustav Arentoft of MakerDAO, Jerome de Tychey of Consensys and George Spasov of LimeChain.

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Nick Todorov

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Nick Todorov
CEO
Nick Todorov brings together experience in building companies, brands and applying blockchain technology. This deep appreciation of business needs alongside a firm grasp of the technical capabilities of blockchain allows him to act as the crucial link between his team’s technical expertise and his clients’ needs.