Insight: Energy-trading blockchains edge closer to reality, but market remains cautious

Is blockchain gaining a foothold in the energy sector? The last two years witnessed a boom in projects around commodities trading and logistics using distributed ledger technology, but the pilots proved slow to move on from proof of concept phases. That might be changing, with two industry-backed blockchain projects in the energy sector now gathering momentum. Vakt, a consortium of energy majors, banks and trading houses, took its blockchain-powered post-trade management system live on November 28, marking a significant commercial launch using the technology. The platform is in a “private” launch phase, with five of the project investors – BP, Equinor, Shell, Gunvor and Mercuria – actively participating and using the system to confirm and manage deals in the North Sea oil market. The other shareholders are Koch Supply & Trading, ABN Amro, ING and Societe Generale. The five active users are now running the platform with live data in parallel with legacy systems, interim chief executive John Jimenez told S&P Global Platts at the company’s offices in early December. “It’s not beta testing with dummy data,” he said. Go deeper: Read our special report: Blockchain for commodities And while the participants are still running legacy systems, Vakt expects that… continue reading

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