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Africa’s Blockchain companies get global

awards and recognition for real applications.

By Bolaji Onibudo.

The recently concluded Global Blockchain Congress in Johannesburg was attended by a number of
upcoming Blockchain and Cryptocurrency companies that showcased a diverse mix of speakers,
panelists and engagements with exhibitors. A unique participant was a native Botswana blockchain
provider, Satoshi Center, which presented its platform for fund raising for start-ups. A product of
Satoshi Center that was presented at the event is Plass, an application that enables individual farmers or
co-operatives to manage their daily farming productions and stocks on the blockchain. The success of
Satoshi center earned it the award of Excellence in Blockchain Incubation Facilities. As expected some of
the participants were start-up companies that were primed for the new cryptocurrency based venture
funding known as Initial Coin Offering or ICO. In particular, KuBitX cryptocurrency exchange and Subaj
global network operating from Malta and Germany respectively were promoting their platforms for
private sale investors. Also, the capabilities demonstrated by KuBitX and Subaj bagged the start-ups
their respective awards of Most Promising Crypto Exchange and Excellence in Application of Blockchain
in Consumer Rewards.

The atmosphere at the conference for start-ups was further made exciting by investors and blockchain
advisory firms such as the US based Austin Texas native, Decentra-group, which focuses on advisory
services for Blockhain and ICO development with strong expertise in legal, marketing and funding for
ICOs. The participants and organisers were also able to recognize the commitments of Decentra-group
to the African continent with the award of Best ICO Services Debutant. Similarly, Cryptovecs capital and
Liquid-crypto Money which are both based in Johannesburg also demonstrated specialisation for
Blockchain related investment and advisory services. Although, the conference took place in
Johannesburg there was strong attendance from other regions including eastern African Blockchain
Advisory firm, Azure Blockchain Consultants based out of Nairobi, Kenya. The array of investors and
advisory companies confirms that the Blockchain industry is gaining more interest for both adoption of
applications and investments. Africa also boasts of its own favorite cryptocurrency, Monero, which is
maintained by a group of developers led by a native of Johannesburg, Riccardo Spagni. Monero has
remained among the top 10 to 20 global cryptocurrencies with market capitalisation exceeding $8
Billion in February 2018.

Furthermore, at the event were other specialized providers such as the non-custodian XendBit
Decentralized Exchange (DEX) and Financial Services platform. According to the founder and author of
the article, Bolaji Onibudo, “XendBit DEX was developed out of a growing need to de-risk cryptocurrency
exchange services by eliminating the possibilities of hacks so as to ensure better security and control to
users”. The XendBit platform whose services also include aid and credit disbursement through the
Blockchain will be fully available at the beginning of the Q4 of 2018 with its ICO launch. XendBit which
was awarded Excellence in Application of Blockchain in Financial Inclusion is also a member of the West
African Blockchain council (WABC). WABC comprises of Blockchain organisations collaborating towards
a Blockchain ecosystem with other leading members such as Seso Global, a Mortgage Blockchain
platform. The continent is also attracting other foreign Blockchain practitioners like Australia’s Lavish
Crypto which also bagged an award of Excellence in Application of Blockchain in Tourism.

On Blockchain education, the continent is also exhibiting a number of active providers such as
Blockchain Academy of South Africa, the Cape town based Crytotraders and Code Lagos sponsored by
Lagos state Government of Nigeria. Coincidentally, African governments are also making necessary
investments in Blockchain such as the South Africa's Reserve bank recent announcement of a successful
trial of its blockchain-powered interbank clearance and settlement system. In a similar vein, in an
attempt to improve revenue assurance, the Nigerian Customs Service (NCS) concluded a proof of
concept in Blockchain Application for its Excise Trade Department. The NCS Excise Trade Blockchain was
designed and co-developed by Blockchain Asset Management Ltd based out of Lagos, Nigeria in
partnership with the Oracle Blockchain Service. This further suggests that the Blockchain landscape in
Africa is attracting big tech giants like Oracle, Microsoft and IBM who are all now looking to offer
solutions. This might also be attributed with Africa not having a strong legacy system in place, as is the
case with the developed world, which perhaps makes Africa more prime for blockchain adoption.