ICON has been hard at work over the last 2 months reaching out to potential connections and bringing in strategic partnerships to help broaden the network of services available on their Republic of Blockchains.
Leveraging their depth of contacts in South Korea, they’ve developed relationships with Line Corp, the Korean Customs Service, Carboneum, and Deloitte. They also held a talk with IEEE and released their Android wallet, ICONex.
Read on for details!
ICON Teams Up With Line To Form Unchain
On May 14, ICON announced a partnership with Line to form Unchain, a joint project that will endeavor to build a blockchain network for Line. Virtually unknown in the West, Line is a social messaging system popular in Japan and Asia with over 200 million monthly average users. Unchain will be a platform on which Line can build dapps to further increase its services, which, in addition to chat, include electronic payments, online shopping, games, news feeds, and more.
Heading Unchain will be Hong-kyu Lee, a technical director at ICON. H.K. Lee works in the field of dapps and Artificial Intelligence in collaboration with Icon, but for this particular project he is being positioned as CEO of the company that will develop Unchain.
Unchain hopes to use token rewards to incentivize Line users to contribute and be active on Line services. Leveraging existing dapps on the Icon network will also make it easy to expand Line services. Ultimately, the goal of this collaboration is to bring blockchain technology into the lives of everyday users, by connecting ICON’s loopchain to apps used in the real world.
ICONex Android Wallet Now Available
You can now now store ICX on your mobile device with the recently released ICONex mobile wallet for Android.
The wallet accepts both ICX, ETH, and ERC-20 compatible tokens. However, it is not possible to execute a token swap of Icon’s original ERC-20 token to the recently released mainnet ICX token. For that, you will still need to use one of the cooperating exchanges.
The developers are working on an ICONex wallet for iOS, but no release date has been scheduled.
Korean Customs To Use Loopchain For Customs Processing
The Korean Customs Service held a ceremony to announce a memorandum of understanding with 8 organizations to help build a blockchain-based system for processing imports into South Korea. The agreement states that the underlying technology will be based on loopchain, which is the core of ICON’s republic of blockchains.
Blockchain technology has long been touted as a natural companion to the Internet of Things, where items can be tracked and indisputably verified at every stage of a shipping process. The ability to account for goods from origin to destination with immutable records would be a huge assist for customs agencies looking to regulate items that come through their borders.
However, most blockchains default to being public records, and many companies would rather not have some aspects of their supply chain made available for all to see, as well as individual privacy rights being at stake.
ICON’s loopchain has a built-in, tiered permissions structure that allows designated data to only be accessible by authorized parties, meaning it’s possible for anyone importing goods into South Korea to be fully transparent to the customs authorities while remaining out of view of any uninvolved parties.
With ICON’s loopchain technology, it will be easier for smaller companies and individuals to import smaller amounts of goods, in contrast to now, where the bureaucracy involved can sometimes add expenses to what might otherwise be a small international purchase.
Of course, the Korea Customs Service also has an eye toward security and crime, and loopchain technology offers the potential for a finer granularity of control, making it harder for those who might attempt to side step South Korean law to succeed.
A pilot project to test the system is planned for the end of the year, with a greater rollout of operations to come soon after.
ICON Partners With Carboneum
ICON has partnered with Carboneum, a social trading platform, to assist them with their blockchain development and provide strategic support as they expand.
Carboneum is the blockchain built on ICON that underpins a trading platform called CoinRadars, and is backed by StockRadars, Thailand’s largest stock trading and analytical platform. StockRadars is an app that has over 680,000 downloads and offers a joint service with the social messaging app Line. With CoinRadars, people can trade coins with each other directly instead of using an intermediary exchange.
ICON Holds Summit With IEEE
ICON was one of the leading sponsors behind the IEEE Blockchain Summit Korea 2018, hosted by IEEE on June 7-8 in Seoul. ICON presented their core Loopchain technology, as well as their plans for dapp development.
The summit was put together in short time so that it could preface the IEEE Global Blockchain Summit on September 17-19, which will take place in Gaithersburg, Maryland, USA. The goal of the summit it to give focus to South Korea’s contributions to blockchain technology, and explore the question of why there is a “Kimchi Premium,” a term given to the fact that South Korean exchanges often list higher values for tokens, creating opportunities for arbitrage.
IEEE, the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers, is an association of engineers and supporters of technology that has over 350,000 members from 150 different countries.
Other participants in the summit were Hashed, a South Korean blockchain-focused investment firm; Bluewhale, a blockchain startup that is trying to offer payment solutions for freelance workers; Edenchain, a blockchain for enterprise level services; and many other mainly South Korean-based, blockchain-related companies.
ICON Signs Memorandum of Understanding With Deloitte
ICON has built yet another business relationship by signing a memorandum of understanding with the Deloitte Startup Advisory Group, on June 8.
The MOU outlines a plan to collaborate on developing and commercializing blockchain projects, something that Deloitte has done with over 30 similar blockchains. Deloitte will provide consultation on accounting and taxation, and professional services for commercialization of ICON services. Both companies will be looking for promising new blockchain startups to bring into ICON’s network to provide support and expansion.
ICON council member J.H. Kim said:
We expect to expand our blockchain network and activities with the collaboration of Deloitte’s global network and partners.
Managing director of Deloitte Startup Advisory Group Y.H .Kim added:
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.
ICON is currently in the process of swapping its initial ERC-20 tokens for its own native mainnet tokens, which is obviously a huge step forward for the project and of primary focus and concern. However, that hasn’t stopped the ICON foundation from pushing forward to build a network of alliances and services to increase its future potential.
ICON’s roadmap for 2018 focuses on developing industry-specific applications, targeting banking, insurance, securities, universities, and hospitals. Once the dust settles on the token swap, we can expect to see lots of business outreach and partnerships through to the end of the year.