Bitcoin is the most popular digital asset in the institutional trading world as it has the best trading options available, both spot and derivatives, proven track record with the longest history and availability of data. This made some of the largest financial services institutions highly interested and in 2019 we saw the birth of several bitcoin products like Bakkt’s physically delivered bitcoin futures, Fidelity Digital Assets bitcoin custody solution and TD Ameritrade’s trading offerings.
But is it also the case for the large enterprises looking at blockchain as technology and wanting to innovate using easier payments over fast and secure transaction networks and processes built around smart contracts? Can they use the bitcoin blockchain as a foundation and place their middleware stack and end-user decentralized Web 3 and decentralized finance (DeFi) applications on top?
So far the majority of enterprise-focused blockchain development has been done on permissioned and private blockchain protocols like Hyperledger Fabric and R3’s Corda. This is mostly due to the fact that they offer sufficient privacy, scalability and transaction finality guarantees. Compared to them, development on top of the bitcoin blockchain was not seriously considered until recently when in May, Microsoft announced their permissionless, Decentralized Identifier (DID) network called ION running exclusively on top of the bitcoin blockchain. That triggered a shift in the sentiment that developers and enterprises should also consider bitcoin as a potential layer for enterprise blockchain development. For example, companies like Bitfury are already making significant progress with enterprise-tailored blockchain offerings like blockchain as a service (BaaS) using bitcoin as a base layer.
Let’s review how bitcoin stacks up as an enterprise-ready development platform. According to a recent Ernst & Young study among decision makers across the U.S., Europe and…