The world of blockchain and Bitcoin rumbles on with patents, platforms and positives. Our latest round-up features Bank of America, Blackmoon Financial Group, and research from Cognizant.

Bank of America (BofA) has filed three new patents using blockchain. On the US Patent & Trademark Office’s website it now reveals the details. Some of the patents include a system for conversion of an instrument from a non-secured instrument to a secured instrument in a process data network; and system for tracking and validation of an entity in a process data network.

Nothing may come of these developments as in 2015 it filed ten blockchain patents. However, in August last year, Bank of America Merrill Lynch (the corporate and investment banking division of BofA), HSBC and the Infocomm Development Authority of Singapore (IDA) did team up to develop a blockchain prototype for trade finance innovation.

Investment management firm Blackmoon Financial Group has launched its Blackmoon Crypto Platform, a blockchain-based platform for tokenised vehicles. This is designed for asset managers to create and manage legally compliant tokenised funds – from technology and infrastructure to legal framework and corporate structuring. The platform and its tokens are based on the Ethereum blockchain.

Blackmoon has been operational since August 2014. The company is led by Oleg Seydak (an entrepreneur and fintech investor) and Ilya Perekopsky (entrepreneur, IT angel investor and former VP and COO of VK, a social network in Eastern Europe). It also offers a lending marketplace which operates in nine countries and has exceeded $100 million in deals volume. Blackmoon has 19 staff, with offices in Moscow, Limassol (Cyprus) and New York.

Cognizant has offered up some research with over 1,500 financial services executives from 578 firms – with 91% claiming that blockchain’s implementation and use will be “critical or important to their firm’s future”. It’s probably in Cognizant’s interest to big up blockchain, as in February it partnered with Japanese financial services provider Mizuho to test cross-border document sharing and custom digital currency applications of blockchain – and the cost implications.

A few points are worth sharing. The research states that 98% expect blockchain to save their firm money. In fact, around three-quarters predicted that their revenues will grow by more than 5% following its adoption. Blockchain is also expected to help spread happiness – such as improved data management (47%), transparency (46%), risk management (40%) and speed of digitisation (39%), as some of the major benefits. However, despite consensus amongst users that the complex algorithms ensure transaction data cannot be tampered with after verification, only 11% believe that blockchain will reduce fraud.

Banking Technology Awards 2017 are now open for entry!

Know any innovative products, inspirational projects, skilled teams or visionary leaders that deserve a special recognition this year? Nominate them for a Banking Technology Award!

Deadline for submitting the nominations is 25 August 2017.