Beyond bitcoin: 7 ways to capitalize on blockchains

Bitcoin’s widely trusted ledger offers intriguing possibilities for business use beyond cryptocurrency

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A future version of the blockchain could make it simpler to create localized currencies. Already some are using basic bitcoin software to create their own localized money for transactions inside organizations, much like companies create their own store credit cards. Some stores or businesses may want to use a similar process to certify their own currency for use by their customers.

Reward points

Many companies have set up reward programs, like airline miles, that build loyalty by rewarding frequent customers. These well-established programs are tracked by basic ledgers running on standard databases.

Moving these rewards program over to a blockchain can increase trust of the users by making the transactions public. It can also allow organizations to open up transactions so that users may trade points among themselves. Many of the current rewards programs strictly limit the way that points can be traded, sometimes keeping them to spouses or people living at the same address. Others prohibit transfers altogether. A more open, blockchain-mediated marketplace can unlock some of the value, make it easier for customers to trade points, and vastly increase interest in your rewards program.

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This story, "Beyond bitcoin: 7 ways to capitalize on blockchains" was originally published by InfoWorld.

Copyright © 2015 IDG Communications, Inc.

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