The Blockchain Revolution: 10 European Fintech Startups to Watch in 2016
NexusLab, Zurich-based business platform, has gathered 10 teams to develop new applications of blockchain technologies in different industries; half of startups are from Nordics.
Daniel Grassinger, managing director of Nexuslab and co-founder of Nexussquared, says:
“Having identified and scouted more than 260 European early-stage blockchain startups and being able to select our pilot cohort out of some 50 qualified applicants is testament to the importance and broad future impact of blockchain technology. We’re very much looking forward to helping these promising startups further develop their ideas, refine their business models and drive technology innovation across a wide range of industries and applications."
Monetising online content
Italy’s Paymeabit aims to change the way online content gets rewarded through a platform which allows the tipping of very small amounts instead of just ‘Like’ the content.
The UK brought Bittunes to Nexuslab. Bittunes is a music sharing and earning platform which monetises the exchange of digital data as users share songs.
Bitcoin is used as the primary operational currency with a possibility to denominate all songs in US dollars. It aims to create a merit-based competitive marketplace for independent music.
Moving data storage to the next level
Caravaggio startup from France creates the reference use case for wine security. It uses blockchain technology as the underlying security platform and combines their financial industry experience with their payment information technology to create a state-of-the-art provenance solution.
For those with a love of cycling, Germany presented Yope, which delivers decentralised applications built on top of the Bitcoin and Ethereum blockchain. This allows users to register their bicycles on the Ethereum blockchain at the moment of initial purchase in a global, immutable register of ownership.
Switzerland’s Doqum.io is a secured cloud storage service and allows its clients to access a single storage account for all their documents from various providers. Blockchain technology is used for document-tracking and user authentication.
Teams from the Nordics achieved every second place in the program, demonstrating a strong position and the highest potential in developing blockchain platforms.
Norway deserved a place in the program with Taqanu Bank, which provides basic blockchain-based banking services including debit cards and checking accounts for migrants, refugees, expatriates and remote workers regardless of residency status or available documentation.
Estonia is rocking the project with ProofOfYou and First Wallet. ProofOfYou provides an Ethereum-based platform for creating, signing, fulfilling and managing contracts and legal documents between different companies or individuals. First Wallet offers a unique wallet which allows every smartphone user to make instant Bitcoin payments without any exchanges or money transfers in a highly secure environment.
Zeptagram, a startup from Sweden, is planning to establish a platform for traders and investors worldwide on which music properties can be traded as an alternative investment.
In prospect, the platform will act as a transparent internet exchange with real-time trading and transparent order books, which are supported by blockchain technology.
Finally, Finland’s Wone makes payments across different mobile wallets possible through an interoperable person-to-person mobile payment solution in Europe. This allows anyone to send money to their friends even if they don’t have the same mobile app.
Nexussquared’s approach to business development
Nexussquared is a business platform which supports diverse and broad-based innovation, establishing partnerships with institutions operating across the financial services sector and beyond. They introduced a program inspired by the blockchain paradigms of decentralisation, trust and efficiency.
The main aspiration is to contribute to the comprehensive development of the European blockchain ecosystem by helping new ventures and established players to facilitate growth of their business.
How? By providing a range of business coaching services and consulting and actively engaging with public sector agencies to facilitate a dialogue between stakeholders and to provide regulatory guidance.
Dedicated blockchain accelerator
During a three-month period start-ups will be individually matched with senior level mentors and financial services experts to receive practical advice on regulatory, technical and commercial aspects of their specific business. Taking place in a predominantly virtual setting based on a secure collaboration platform program it also includes three weekend sessions in major European cities. This will provide the founders of participating startups with the opportunity to meet face-to-face and learn directly from successful fintech companies.
During the final month of the programme, all teams will gather at the nexuslab pop-up lab in Zurich for additional in-person mentoring and to prepare their ideas for a pitch day.
The project offers a great opportunity for participants to access selected experts and help them growing their startups. The second edition of Blockchain accelerator will take place later in 2016.