Blockchain Technology Could Be the Future of Franchising

Blockchain continues to make strides in the modern world, and not solely through cryptocurrencies. From art to football, the next stop for the technology appears to be franchising.


We know that blockchain technology’s intrinsic characteristics allow it to be used in a range of businesses and not just for cryptocurrencies. Live Bitcoin News has reported on it being integrated into supply chain management processes as well as it being used to improve healthcare systems.

A New Use for Blockchain

According to Forbes, another interesting avenue for blockchain to explore is franchising. This prospect was discussed at the recent International Bar Association’s Franchise Law Committee meeting in Italy. Craig Tractenberg, of law firm Fox Rothchild, said:

One of the roundtable discussions dealt with the use of blockchain technology in franchising. Those familiar with blockchain technology know that it can be used beyond cryptocurrency transactions and applied to any record keeping. The anticipated uses of this digitized public ledger technology are for digital payment, smart contract, and database – record management systems.

One of the key features of disruptive technologies is that they cut out the middleman in any equation, which, depending on the business, could result in more efficient processes and less money or commissions paid to third parties. This peer-to-peer approach could also make use of smart contracts, which are self-fulfilling agreements that are concluded once certain pre-determined conditions are met.

Tractenberg elaborated on this while referencing a few platforms, saying:

The discussion itemized the commercial application of the technology to the franchise context. Cited was FOODCOIN Ecosystems as a global marketplace for food and agricultural products designed to eliminate intermediaries through the use of smart contacts. Another emerging company is FANTOM Foundation, which has apps for food reservations, geolocation and supply chain management. Carry Protocol, provides merchants and customers a platform to communicate and understand each other, and is effectively an advertising channel.

Live Bitcoin News actually recently reported on how major retailers like U.S.-based Walmart and France-based Carrefour are making use of the technology to track and trace certain fresh produce items.

Rewarding Customers in Crypto

Another way for blockchain to be used in the retail sector is through rewards programs. Chanticleer Holding, whose stable includes American Burger and Hooters, has actually introduced a loyalty program for the latter. The group’s CEO, Michael Pruitt, explained:

Customers can have a cryptocurrency loyalty program across all Chanticleer Holding brands — and beyond. It runs on the MobivityMind commerce platform, and will pay out in Merits, a cryptocurrency that’s leveraging the same infrastructure and principles of Bitcoin, Ethereum, Ripple, Litecoin, and more.

Live Bitcoin News recently ran an article on how certain companies in the beauty industry have plans to reward their loyal clients in crypto, which will not only grow their customer base but will also increase the usage and adoption of cryptocurrencies in the retail industry.

Do you think that franchising is the next stop for the blockchain train? Let us know in the comments below!


Images courtesy of Shutterstock.

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Crypto Markets See Little Movement, Bitcoin Continues to Trade Just Below $6,500

Saturday, Oct. 20: Crypto markets are seeing little momentum, with virtually all of the major cryptocurrencies seeing slight growth and losses between a 1-2 percent range, as Coin360 data shows.

coin360

Market visualization by Coin360

Tether (USDT) has mostly settled back in to its characteristic trading pattern. Having briefly lost its U.S. dollar peg last week, the asset has since reclaimed its historical trading range close to a 1:1 ratio to the greenback. Today the stalwart stablecoin has seen an almost 1 percent drop to trade at $0.979.

Bitcoin (BTC) is trading at $6,473 at press time, seeing negligible price change on the day according to CoinMarketCap. Following its short-lived ascent to $6,965 Oct. 17, correlated with Tether’s price tumble, Bitcoin has corrected back to a trading range just a little higher than at the start of its weekly chart.

Earlier this month, Bitcoin achieved a 17-month low volatility rate, recording its highest level of stability since mid-2017, and the trend has continued over the past few days.

Coupled with low volatility, BTC trading volumes remain low; as of press time the figure is around $3.55 billion.

On the week, the top coin has seen a gentle increase of around 3.3 percent: on its monthly chart, growth is just 0.23 percent.

BTC

Bitcoin 7-day price chart. Source: CoinMarketCap

Ethereum (ETH) is seeing similarly slight momentum, up just 0.63 percent to trade around $205, according to CoinMarketCap. Over the past week, the leading altcoin has seen a similar trading pattern to Bitcoin, spiking to $220 Oct. 15 before correcting downwards and then sideways in recent days.

This brings Ethereum to a 3 percent gain on its weekly chart; monthly losses are roughly equal in the opposite direction, at 2.7 percent.

ETH

Ethereum 7-day price chart. Source: CoinMarketCap

Most of the remaining top ten coins on CoinMarketCap are in the green.

The strongest top-ten performer is fourth largest coin Bitcoin Cash (BCH), up 1.4 percent on the day to trade around $447. Anonymity-oriented alt Monero (XMR) is seeing a modest 0.21 percent change on the day to press time.

In the context of the top twenty coins, the market picture is also stable, with virtually all assets seeing minor growth of below the 1-2 percent mark. The exception is Zcash (ZEC), which has relatively “soared” almost 4 percent on the day to trade at $124.86.

The alt dislodged Dogecoin (DOGE) from its spot as twentieth largest coin by market cap earlier this week, and has seeing sustained growth atypical for the wider market.

Native exchange token Binance coin (BNB) is one of the only top twenty coins in the red, but down only 0.56 percent..

Total market capitalization of all cryptocurrencies is at around $209 billion as of press time. Since its intraweek peak at $220.2 billion Oct. 15., the market has tapered downwards and has continued evenly around the $210 billion mark for several days.

Total

7-day chart of the total market capitalization of all cryptocurrencies from CoinMarketCap

A new report from Big Four auditor Ernst and Young has found that among the “top” initial coin offerings (ICOs) that raised capital in 2017, 86 percent of project tokens are trading below their listing price, with 30 percent having lost “substantially all value.” Beyond investment returns, the auditor found that only 29 percent of studied projects had either a working product or prototype – up just 15 percent from at the end of last year.

In other altcoin news, developers at Ethereum – the platform the underpins most ICO tokens – yesterday reached a consensus to delay a planned hard fork of the protocol until January 2019. The fork, dubbed “Constantinople,” was supposed to be activated by the end of Oct.-Nov. this year, but faced a number of hurdles during its testnet trial last weekend.

Bitcoin ATM Firm Not Liable for Scam Victim’s Losses: Canadian Judge

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A Canadian bitcoin ATM firm which was sued by a victim of fraud can finally breathe a sigh of relief after a judge ruled that the firm was not liable for the losses incurred.

The victim, a woman whose name was withheld, had sued Instacoin ATM Canada to get back the C$62,500 she sent using the firm’s cryptocurrency vending machines to fraudsters, all the while thinking she was transferring the money to Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) to pay her taxes, according to the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation.

Delivering the ruling in Charlottetown in Canada’s Prince Edward Island Province, Chief Provincial Judge Nancy Orr ruled that the contract between Instacoin ATM Canada and the woman was for the purchase of exchanging cash for bitcoin — not for the cryptocurrency vending machine firm to send the funds to the tax body.

‘Decentralized Responsibility’

Additionally, the judge stated that users of cryptocurrencies have to take personal responsibility for what they purchase as transactions are not reversible:

“Both sides involved in this case are completely sympathetic to the woman. It’s up to the bitcoin purchaser to know what they’re doing,” the judge ruled.

Bitcoin ATMs

The victim was initially contacted by the scammers, who were posing as CRA officials and went on to accuse her of making false claims on her tax filings. A recent Iranian immigrant to Canada, the scammers threatened to have her arrested and deported unless she paid the taxes she owed the CRA in bitcoin.

To make the scheme look legitimate, the fraudsters faked a call which appeared to be originating from her accountant’s office with the “advice” that she should pay up. Now duped by the scam, the victim was directed to a specific bitcoin ATM located at a pizza restaurant in Charlottetown.

Fear of the State Machinery

Per the victim’s account of the incident, part of the reason why she acceded to the demands of the scammers was that, with her background, the heavy-handedness of the state was all too familiar and she wanted to avoid falling on the wrong side of the government. But, despite the woman’s lawyer arguing that she acted under duress, Judge Orr pointed out that “Instacoin did not put her under duress” and neither was it aware of her state of mind.

Such scams are, however, not restricted to Canada. Recently, as CCN reported, a similar scam was exposed in Australia, resulting in the country’s taxman issuing a warning to the effect that the Australian Taxation Office does not accept tax debts to be paid in bitcoin. Despite the warnings, the scam still persists, and as of earlier this month, the con artists had hauled in AU$50,000, with the amount being potentially higher since some victims are usually too embarrassed to report.

Images from Shutterstock

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