5 blockchain statistics: CIO reality check

CIOs and industry analysts don't see the blockchain trend exactly the same way. Consider these statistics on spending and plans
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Blockchain landed on Gartner’s Top 10 Strategic Technology Trends list in 2016. Around the same time, analysts at PWC called it a “tech breakthrough megatrend” for CIOs. More than a year later, where do CIOs stand on blockchain?

A few recent statistics show that actual CIO and leader perceptions of blockchain might be at odds with analyst predictions. A group of healthcare CIOs picked blockchain as the most over-hyped technology trend of the moment.

In the transportation sector, over half of respondents to a recent survey said that blockchain was interesting, but they didn’t know what to do with it, according to Gartner.

[ See a related article: What is a blockchain smart contract? ]

Perhaps these execs are skeptical due to not only online buzz but also the recent flurry of attempts to capitalize on blockchain by changing company names. Case in point: A 200 percent instant rise in stock price when the brand Long Island Iced Tea changed its name to “Long Blockchain Corp.” They were just one of several companies that sought to capitalize on the “crypto craze.” The SEC has since said it will be scrutinizing such moves.

Still, with investment flooding into the cryptocurrency market, the noise around blockchain isn’t likely to die down anytime soon. For CIOs looking to cut through the hype, we’ve rounded up some recent numbers and stats that highlight the rapid rise of blockchain to date – and where it might be headed in the near future.

$600 billion: The size of the entire cryptocurrency market by the end of 2017, according to CoinMarketCap. Consider the pace of growth over the last 12 months: It started the year at just $16 billion.

$2.1 billion: Global spending on blockchain solutions in 2018, according to IDC. Stacey Soohoo, research manager, customer insights and analysis at IDC, says, “The year 2018 will be a crucial stage for enterprises as they make a huge leap from proof-of-concept projects to full blockchain deployments. As a leader in blockchain innovation and integration, the US will continue to invest in blockchain throughout the forecast, spending heavily in financial services, manufacturing, and other industries.”

[ How can you get started with blockchain? See our related story, Blockchain: 4 ways to experiment. ]

42.8 percent: The expansion of the blockchain space every year to 2022, according to a Netscribes prediction. Looking beyond this year, the market research group believes the “key factors behind this ascension will be blockchain adoption in financial transactions and cross-border payments.”

3x: The number of blockchain-related LinkedIn job postings more than tripled over the last year. Organizations badly in need of blockchain developers are setting up training centers, outsourcing, or even nabbing talent before they’ve graduated college.

13 percent: Senior IT leaders who have clear and current plans to implement blockchain, according to IDG Connect research. Based on this statistic, plenty of CIOs are taking their time with blockchain.

However, especially if you are a CIO in financial services or manufacturing, 2018 may be the year that blockchain moves from pilot projects to production in your organization, as Paul Brody, principal and global innovation leader, blockchain technology at EY, recently shared with us. (See 5 blockchain trends to watch for in 2018. )

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Carla Rudder is a community manager and program manager for The Enterprisers Project. She enjoys bringing new authors into the community and helping them craft articles that showcase their voice and deliver novel, actionable insights for readers.