Within the framework of Blockstart Programme under Horizon Europe, the panel discussion "Exploring Blockchain Ecosystem: Collaboration Between Start-ups and SMEs" was held by CIVITTA last April 28.

During the event, we had the opportunity to listen and learn from five Start-ups and SMEs who expressed their thoughts about Blockchain ecosystems and collaboration between Start-ups, SMEs and large corporates: Kedeon,, Latitudo40, LAB577 and NGI TruBlo. During the discussion between the speakers, they analysed not only the cryptocurrencies and the financial technologies as the traditional blockchain sectors, but also Blockchain suitability in other fields related to ICT products.

None of them denied that deciding to take the first steps in this new world was easy, since you always think about the risks or losses that may arise when relying on this new technology which may still be difficult to understand. However, they confirmed that collaborating and working with SME adopters to apply the Blockchain technology is the best decision in the short and long term, since SME adopters are normally agile to quickly adjust to these challenges.

Blockchain at its core provides immunity, transparency, efficiency, traceability and security to almost every major sector. Blockchain is a tool that stores data transparently in a way in which it can never be modified or altered making it one of the most secure and traceable aspects in business. Blockchain can be worked into almost any vertical field but the ones it seems to have the biggest impact on so far are supply chain, finance, healthcare, retail and government. One of the biggest effects blockchain can have on a business is cost. The removal of intermediaries is a boom for business as it not only reduces cost but also reduces point of contact – improving both efficiency and growth. Efficiency is another reason companies have been migrating over to blockchain technology. In the finance sector for example it is now possible to transfer millions of dollars within seconds from China to New York. Blockchain will only continue to grow, become more valuable and have more uses moving into the future, most importantly on decentralized services. Blockchain aims to create efficient and reliable administration, improve and intensify local development, better ensure the rights of the local population to have a voice in government, and better protect minorities.

Among the multiple analyses and comments on Blockchain, we highlight through this article some of the most interesting and useful points for SMEs. In the first place, they commented that Blockchain technology will be more and more applied because we, human beings, will increasingly trust data (as it happened with the internet age, for example). Thirty years ago, people were afraid of sharing private information using public networks. Right now, we have the same cycle happening repeatedly because we just trust on private blockchain. For this reason, in the next years we need to increase the education of people and explain the benefits of these open ecosystems that are slowly converging; this amazing technology that has the potential to change the fabric of society but doesn´t do it behind closed doors.

Finally, the blockchain space is also expected to move towards having solutions that can provide direct value. The use of internet technology gives us a common application on a desktop that distributes the information. What we are watching right now with the blockchain space is the creation of internet value: the store transfer of value in a digital format that has several disruptive activities across industries. We are watching not only SMEs, but also the public sector and foreign organisations that are connecting lots of APIs bilaterally and creating a web amongst their ecosystem, amongst their industry. Actually, what they are seeking is a common network that can transfer not only information, but also value back and forward while they are holding a common record. That´s where you start to see blockchain being used to form or create a distributed database between many parties.

In conclusion, from SCALE UP, we believe that Blockchain is on the internet of value and is a true enabler of trust that is coming towards us. As we always uphold, SMEs are an essential part of this process and should keep moving, keep changing and keep adapting! 

You can see the recording of the webinar here.