Insolar, a decentralized blockchain based network focused on achieving synergies for enterprises, is preparing to launch an enterprise-focused blockchain platofrm. The platform will harness the power of distributed ledger technology to create cost efficiencies and new revenue streams whilst powering transformative business models.
Insolar uses a cloud based blockchain as a service (BaaS) architecture making the service rapidly deployable.
As a fourth generation blockchain technology, it solves a number of fundamental challenges that currently form a stumbling block for other blockchain based projects. Insolar claims that it goes farther than competing blockchain networks in terms of scalability, ease of use and interoperability. It’s team comprises of 30 full time engineers, 10 academic researchers, together with a number of enterprise leaders. With that, it claims to possess a strength in depth when it comes to blockchain, Internet of Things (IoT), artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML).
One key indicator of a blockchain project which has strength in depth in terms of development is the level of developer activity. The level of activity recorded on the well known project source code repository, Github, confirms that Insolar has had the highest number of ‘commits’ or submissions of source code to the code hosting and version management service than any other blockchain related project over the past 3 months.
The platform’s use case stems from an issue that has arisen at an enterprise level in recent times. According to global management consulting company, Accenture, 36% of companies are connecting to and sharing data with twice as many stakeholders as they did last year. Existing systems are centralized and siloed. They were not designed to cope with this level of data sharing. This has led to companies spending time and resources trying to connect together existing and incompatible systems. As a chain reaction, it results in companies transporting, processing and verifying data. Often this has to be outsourced to intermediaries and notwithstanding this additional strain on resources, discrepancies inevitably arise nonetheless.
It’s this problem which enterprises face that Insolar have identified an opportunity. The beauty of blockchain technology when it comes to data which must be shared between stakeholders is that the data is immutable and so it can be trusted. Insolar’s open source platform delegates trust to a shared network. It connects with existing systems so that organizations – regardless of enterprise size – can connect seamlessly. As the system runs on a blockchain based cloud, it negates the need for companies to invest in additional IT professionals and infrastructure.
The company’s solution can integrate with, or enable migration from, existing blockchain systems that run on Hyperledger Fabric or Corda. It’s solution incorporates a number of features that mean it’s first to market for this industry sector. Examples include support simultaneously for public and private networks, amendable and bug-resistant smart contracts, transactions longer than one block and multi-zone security.
CEO of Insolar, Andrey Zhulin, commented on their forthcoming offering:
“We’re building Insolar to solve real business needs, today. Its requirements were informed by decades of industrial experience and validated by field research across multiple verticals: supply chain, consumer goods, energy, finance, and manufacturing. Insolar also has the benefit of hindsight, building off the successes and shortcomings of our predecessors.”
In terms of collaborations with industry, the company are currently negotiating pilot Proof of Concept’s (PoC’s) with an independent mining company, smart grids in Toronto and a leading European logistics firm. It anticipates production launch in mid 2019.
“Insolar is a state-of-the-art blockchain platform, and more”, says Zhulin. “It’s a full-service ecosystem that will help any organization, of any size, profit from blockchain technology — from proof of concept, to production — and give them the tools they need to innovate and build the transformative business models of tomorrow.”
Whilst the platform will be open source in nature, the company derive revenue from a number of different streams. In the first instance, domain registration in the ecosystem with full amenability to the individual domains’ governance schemes. The company provide a consultancy service to users relative to the platform and associated applications. Customized product development for individual business needs, paid ready-to-use blocks for applications and services, and vendor certification complete the range of services offered.
Whilst attending the Blockchain Expo North America in Santa Clara today, Peter Fedchenkov, co-founder of Insolar spoke to The Bitcoin Mag. He began by explaining the problem Insolar plan to solve:
“Today’s enterprise I.T. infrastructure creates [data] silos and it’s fully disconnected from the collaborative nature of the business. As a result, companies across the world are wasting billions of dollars in disputes, increased settlement times and expenditure on otherwise unnecessary overheads. The way Insolar can help, Insolar applies blockchain technology to create shared business networks. In this way, I.T. systems are aligned and inefficiencies are removed.”
Fedchenkov went on to explain that the range of industries that Insolar can impact is multi-fold. However, he feels that sectors such as supply chain where complete traceability can be assured and inefficiencies can be ironed out provides a logical starting point. Disputes are opened when goods are lost. Insolar’s blockchain based application heads off such problems as all stakeholders can trust in the data on the blockchain. Whatever enterprises share in the physical world, they can share in the enterprise I.T. world as blockchain enables distributed trust. No single stakeholder controls the network whilst all stakeholders establish and maintain the single version of truth through consensus.
In terms of competition, Fedchenkov believes that there are no conventional solutions that address such issues in the way that Insolar does. In terms of blockchain based solutions, applications based on Ethereum, Hyperledger Fabric and Cardano may target the same use case. However, he feels that Insolar has a number of technical advantages.
Insolar’s solution incorporates dynamic consensus which adjusts the level of consensus required based upon the value of the transaction implicated – making the process more efficient. This differs from other blockchain protocols where the consensus mechanism is not dynamic relative to the nature or value of the transaction.
Unlike many other blockchains, Insolar does not require companies to run a node. Fedchenkov clarifies that Insolar are not in the business of blockchain for blockchains sake. It wants to extract the value of blockchain and integrate that into business applications.
In terms of the roadmap ahead, Insolar’s next key goal is the launch of its testnet which it has scheduled for January 2019. Currently, Insolar is negotiating pilot PoCs with an independent mining company, smart grids in Toronto, and a leading European logistics firm. It anticipates a production launch in mid-2019. The main-net which will support commercial applications will go live in mid-2019.
*Disclosure: This article includes a client of an Espacio portfolio company
** Article updated at 16:50 ET to include comments from Peter Fedchenkov, co-founder of Insolar.