Like the Internet and the Internet of Things (IoT), blockchain transformation will be a multi-year journey. We’re now at the beginning of that journey—an exciting time, when innovators from across industries are experimenting with new ways to harness blockchain technology in applications that range from enabling real estate transactions to securing energy grids and autonomous vehicles.

But to unlock the value of blockchains and to ensure their widespread adoption, the industry needs to drive technology standardization and interoperability. To this end, Cisco is joining forces with the blockchain ecosystem in key forums. Between this week and last, we’ve announced our investment and expanded engagement in two major industry consortia:

  • Enterprise Ethereum Alliance (EEA): To be taken seriously blockchain needs enterprise-ready capabilities. That is the focus of EEA. “Enterprise-class blockchain technologies have a potential to redefine how organizations transact value,” said Maciej Kranz, vice president of Strategic Innovation at Cisco. “Cisco sees great potential in the EEA’s work—its ecosystem efforts complement other industry initiatives that are exploring blockchain as a potential foundation for enterprise technology solutions.”
  • Hyperledger: Cisco is a founding member of the Hyperledger project created in the Linux Foundation in December 2015. This forum is recognized as a foundational open source initiative that will define how enterprises should respond to blockchain growth opportunities. Today, we announced further investment as a premier member. In this expanded position, Cisco will be able to take a greater leadership role in defining modular architectural approaches within the blockchain ecoysystem.

In addition, Cisco is leading in the formation of the Trusted IoT Alliance, along with Bosch, Bank of New York Mellon, Foxconn, Gemalto and several of the most innovative blockchain startups. The Alliance is focused on ensuring blockchain interoperability in IoT applications, regardless of underlying blockchain platform. This effort will help accelerate the adoption of blockchain solutions in IoT—ranging from managing and reporting mining site data, manufacturing supply chain, transportation data security, oil and gas operations, and energy production – all the way to insurance risk management. These types of applications are often disrupting decades-old business processes and technical workflows. And they all have to work together to maximize value. By leading the Trusted IoT Alliance, Cisco will help to bridge these investment areas and allow customers and partners to take advantage of economies of scale across various ecosystems.

For the blockchain industry to thrive, users need to have a strong assurance that their multi-stakeholder blockchain transactions remain trustworthy as they interact with multiple networks. Cisco’s internet-critical infrastructure perspective and approach will provide guidance for secure and trusted value delivery.

We are thrilled about the promise blockchain holds for all areas of IoT and proud to lead efforts in network infrastructure and protocol interoperability. It’s critical that the industry works together to realize its full growth potential.

Watch this space for more developments as industry momentum in blockchain continues to accelerate. Please comment below. We’d love to hear what has you excited about blockchain and all its possibilities.