State of Blockchain Study: Interest and Adoption Rise as Middlemen Move Out

We’re unsurprisingly bullish on blockchain at SAP. Throughout the course of the year, we’ve grown our community of customers and partners — and we often seek their feedback to determine if they’re seeing the same trends that we are. We issued the latest results today, as part of an enterprise blockchain study. The results found that many in the industry share in our optimism.

Customer Momentum

The results are almost unanimous: 99.5 percent of respondents view blockchain as an opportunity, up from 92 percent of respondents from earlier this year. Eighty-four percent are currently engaged in blockchain-related activities, the same percentage as our Spring 2018 report and a PwC study from August. What was promising six months ago has solidified throughout 2018: interest is universal, and adoption is tangible.

Industry Diversity

Adoption is also diverse, we found a variety of industries actively driving use cases. In prior years, blockchain’s mainstream perception was synonymous with cryptocurrency. Nine months later, cryptocurrency values are fluctuating, while business cases are more popular in supply chain and increasingly in corporate finance.

In the supply chain, SAP’s grown its customer base through global track & trace, especially for pharmaceutical companies, transportation management and farm-to-consumer solutions. But we also see growing potential to support the corporate finance function. Respondents ranked streamlined financial transactions — including audits, taxes and regulatory transparency — as their most important SAP blockchain use case.

Variety also applies to the internal stakeholders responsible for driving adoption. The most common stakeholders were individual line-of-business executives, followed by the CIO/IT department, offering another indicator of blockchain’s growing reach within the enterprise.

Intermediary Consolidation

While adoption and interest are both on the rise, there is another widely recognized benefit of blockchain adoption: the reduction of unnecessary intermediaries across existing business processes. Ninety-three percent of respondents see the “middleman” in various industries getting left behind, ultimately making intermediary services redundant in the next 5–10 years.

We had a chance to see many blockchain realities on display last month, as part of an SAP-led consortium of industry leaders including UPS, Intel and HPE. The technology continues to move forward at a fast pace, and we’re committed to growing the number of success stories in a collaborative and value-driven manner. If you’re interested in joining us in our blockchain-related development, register today to learn more about our Blockchain Consortium and Co-Innovation Program. We welcome the chance to innovate with those who are working hard to turn the promise of blockchain into a current reality.

NOTE: This piece originally appeared on the SAP News Center.