Blockchain 101: Crypto and other applications

IYPN (Indian Young Professionals Network) UK organised a successful panel discussion on “Blockchain 101: Crypto and other Applications” on 22nd February at the High Commission of India, London. The Deputy High Commissioner (DHC) Mr Dinesh Patnaik chaired the event with eminent speakers Lord Jitesh Gadhia, Mr Ved Sen, Alex Shelkovnikov and Jeremy Millar. 

Manav Gupta, Managing Director, Goldman Sachs and co-founder of IYPN introduced the event with an overview of the network, the mantra – ENGAGE-  INSPIRE -IMPACT. More than 30 events the network has hosted since its inaugural event in May 2016 and attracted more than 300 select members from field of banking, law, asset management, technology, retail etc that are part of this esteemed network. Mr. Gupta emphasised the common thread of keenness to learn, discuss new technologies and be part of India’s growth story amongst its members.
The event began with the DHC giving an overview of the crypto space with market cap of crypto currencies reaching close to 1tr and how the Indian government has built a task force to apply blockchain to different industries.
Ved Sen, digital evangelist at Tata Consultancy Services with 20 years at the interface of business, design and emerging technology gave an overview of how blockchain works , drawing a parallel with the double entry book keeping system that originated in 16th century as a means to record transactions .
Alex Shelkovnikov, who formerly led Deloitte’s UK Blockchain business and is recently an investor at Semantic Ventures, an early stage venture capital firm focused on decentralised technologies. Through his early engagement in setting up the Bitcoin foundation in 2012 and now advising the Ukraine government on the applicability of blockchain / crypto currencies he brought to life the strengths of the deep rooted change that the technology will bring across governments and businesses. When asked on the proliferation of crypto currencies, he drew the analogy with music. “There are many songs, only some are bestsellers and survive over time”, he said.
Jeremy Millar, Chief of Staff, ConsenSys and a founding Board Member of the Enterprise Ethereum Alliance made it evident that blockchain is a global revolution spanning across industries, now top banks , and a huge disruptor to the old business models.
Lord Gadhia stressed the view of the government and also detailed the characteristics of money – unit of account,  store of value, medium of exchange. Also, how crypto currencies were at the crossroads of mathematics, technology and economics.
This was followed by an engaging Q&A with the audience which had members from the industry including WIREX (bit coin wallet), new disruptors, digital entrepreneurs and media. Questions ranged from issues in using crypto as medium of exchange (what happens if someone buys all bitcoin, what will happen given the proliferation of over 1,400 crypto currencies), application of blockchain in different industries to democratisation that blockchain and crypto is bringing to the global financial system.
About IYPN
IYPN is a cutting edge exclusive members club which was set up in collaboration wit the IHC London and its core team pans across industries in UK – Manav Gupta, Founder, and MD Goldman Sachs, Arunima Kumar, Co-Founder and Britain’s leading artist), Pratik Dattani, MD EPG and former UK Director FICCI UK, Sairam Kamath, Observatory Capital, Priyanka Sethi, TCS, enterpreneur Bhavya Jain, Tarun Sharma, Morgan Stanley, Shashank Krishna, McDermott Will & Emery.

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