June 8th, 2018 — ICON and Deloitte Startup Advisory Group (Managing Director, YS Kim) signed an MOU to develop, empower and commercialize blockchain based projects. Collaboration between Deloitte Blockchain Lab, which has developed and commercialized more than 30 blockchain projects, and ICON’s technology is expected to strengthen both companies’ competitiveness in the blockchain industry.
Deloitte is one of the largest professional services companies in the world, specializing in auditing, assurance, taxation, management consulting, advising, corporate finance, and legal services. Together with PwC, EY, and KPMG, Deloitte makes up the “Big Four” — the four largest accounting firms in the world. In 2017, Deloitte led the Big Four in revenue with an estimated earnings figure of $38 billion.
Grid by Deloitte is an initiative by Deloitte that offers its clients “financial services capabilities, at the intersection of technology, customer, and innovation.” In addition to insurance and investment management products, the service also provides access to unique and potentially disruptive banking strategies. Deloitte’s website states that clients can “work with our development teams (both in-person and virtually) to build working prototypes and market-ready technology solutions that use the latest in financial services innovations such as blockchain, robotics & cognitive, digital banking and internet of things.”
Last year, in an effort to extend the services offered by Grid, Deloitte started two blockchain labs — one in Ireland and the other in New York City. There are plans to add more labs around the world over time. The NYC-based team of over 20 developers and designers will “focus on developing strategic blockchain capabilities and proofs of concept into functioning prototypes to create “ready-to-integrate” solutions for financial services clients.” Furthermore, Deloitte states, “the lab will work alongside specialist teams from other countries and with Deloitte’s network of more than a dozen preferred technology companies.” I presume ICON is one of those “specialist teams from other countries”, and ICON specializes in interoperability.
Through this agreement, the Deloitte Startup Advisory Group will provide professional services for the commercialization of blockchain based projects through accounting/financial consulting, tax advisory, risk consulting, investment sourcing and overseas advancement support. In addition, the two companies will continue to search for promising blockchain startups.
So, what can we gather from all this?
Deloitte’s clients are some of the largest companies in the world, and they’re serious about implementing blockchain technology to stay competitive and ahead of the game. They have blockchain labs around the world that are busy implementing private blockchain solutions to make their clients’ businesses more efficient and profitable. Now, they’ve partnered with ICON, an interoperability-focused blockchain. Why? My guess is they’re looking for a standardized way to make meaningful connections between private blockchains, and from a business standpoint, there’s no better solution than theloop’s ICON at the moment.
J.H. Kim, ICON Council Member:
We expect to expand our blockchain network and activities with the collaboration of Deloitte’s global network and partners.
Y.H. Kim, Deloitte SAG Managing Director:
“Collaboration between leading companies in the blockchain business is essential. By working with ICON we look forward to creating best practices for applying blockchain technology in the real world and expand our strength in the blockchain industry.”
These quotes say it all. ICON expects to expand their network by making connections with and between Deloitte’s partners. Deloitte is looking to adopt blockchain technology to stay competitive in the real world by using ICON. This partnership is mutually beneficial.