Blockchain is the distributed ledger technology that is changing the way companies transact. The Linux Foundation’s Hyperledger Project is an open source collaborative effort designed to advance cross-industry blockchain technologies by enabling communities of software developers to build blockchain frameworks and platforms. Interested to see how members are benefiting from the community and how they’re using Hyperledger technology, I spoke with Sean Dennis, the co-founder and CHO of Loyyal, a universal rewards platform.
Q: How is Loyyal disrupting the loyalty industry?
While the payments industry has had innovation after innovation, the loyalty industry has stayed relatively stagnant. The tools and capabilities operators have at their disposal now, without blockchain and smart contracts, don’t allow them to target or service their customers in an effective way. Some larger operators even have liabilities in the billions of dollars in terms of their loyalty points. This is dangerous because a slight downturn in the economy can be enough to sink a company.
Loyyal uses blockchain and smart contract technology to drastically reduce the costs of setting up and operating a loyalty program. It enables operators to dynamically target consumers in an effective way that allows them to increase revenue and therefore profits.
Q: How do you view blockchain?
If the web is the internet of information, the blockchain is the internet of value because it allows for the storage and transfer of value (or records of value) between parties. It was costly before but now it can be done instantly and in real time with little to no cost. In that same vein, we see Loyyal as the internet of loyalty. It is a network for loyalty rewards.
We were interested in Hyperledger because we were trying to find an industry standard for blockchain technology. The ability to collaborate with some of the largest and most influential technology consultants, user groups and businesses in the world who were willing to establish a standard was very attractive. The collaborative manner in which Hyperledger was formed and worked together was also something in which we were interested. We were honored to have been invited in by IBM, and we take a very active role in not only learning about the possibilities of blockchain technology, but also in migrating over to Hyperledger Fabric.
Q: What has surprised you about the Hyperledger Project?
The collaborative nature of the Hyperledger Project along with the willingness and the speed with which participants have contributed code and worked together. Not to mention the continued growth of members.
Q: What have you liked about the Hyperledger community?
One thing I’ve actually really enjoyed is the importance given to “the little guy” or startups, like Loyyal, and the equal voice the participants have. We’re able to take a fairly important role and benefit from the technologies.
Q: How has Hyperledger helped you “win” clients?
Together with IBM, we have plans to migrate to Hyperledger Fabric. A number of clients have specifically decided to go with us based on that decision and our partnership with IBM. Our partnership with IBM and our willingness and intention to migrate over to Fabric has actually managed to land us clients and allowed us to build a strong reputation in the market. Hyperledger allows an operator who wants to learn about blockchain, which is a niche technology, to feel confident they are working with a team, whether it be a small startup like us or a larger one, that has the support of a company like IBM.
The IBM Blockchain Ecosystem brings together a range of people and companies interested in blockchain solutions, providing them with the resources, such as Hyperledger Fabric, they need to tap into this exciting new space. Find out more here.
In part two, I ask the chief architect of Loyyal, Shannon Code, about his experience with Hyperledger.
Also, join the IBM Blockchain community to let us know what you think!
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