Blockchain has rapidly emerged as one of this year’s most important technologies. In the last few years, its growth has truly opened a new era in the efficiency, transparency and security of the world’s transactions. Syniverse has been steadily making investments in this technology in parallel with this growth, and this has recently culminated in a couple of major achievements for us.
For businesses and industries involved in clearing and settlement today, the logical evolution is blockchain. It’s transforming the speed, ease, flexibility, and, most importantly, security of the way we monetize transactions. In particular, a crucial factor driving the adoption of blockchain is that the number of transactions is increasing tremendously in an all-connected world driven by, one, the internet of things (IoT) and, two, 5G, the new mobile standard that will enable the robust and reliable foundation for powering the IoT. At the same time, the requirement to be able to securely validate and monetize these transactions has become more vital than ever. Blockchain technology offers an ideally suited solution to meet these requirements.
Syniverse’s role has lent itself to playing an integral role with blockchain. Our heritage includes decades of connecting both mobile operators and enterprises that has almost perfectly positioned us to help today’s companies deal with an ever-growing ecosystem and related transactions. We serve as the ultimate independent third party that can enable, validate, and monetize transactions.
To this end, we recently made a major move in blockchain with the announcement of the completion of a proof of concept with IBM, Orange, and MTS. We co-developed a solution that uses blockchain to instantly validate new wholesale billing and charging processes for clearing and settlement services. The first phase included the successful testing of a pilot, and Syniverse and IBM are now bringing this solution to market to sell to mobile operators.
A couple of weeks later, we followed this announcement by taking part in an IBM Blockchain Platform Board of Advisors meeting in the New York City area that I attended on behalf of Syniverse. The board is composed of some of today’s leading lights in blockchain development that include programmers, developers, product managers, and senior executives from technology companies as well as businesses from a range of industries. Syniverse is privileged to be a member and is represented by myself and Dennis Meurs, Vice President and General Manager of Transaction and Clearing Services, and head of our blockchain solutions.
The meeting offered us an opportunity to contribute input on a variety of the newest standards now emerging for blockchain that will shape its application by businesses for years to come. One of the most important of these is Hyperledger, an open source initiative whose goal is to create enterprise-grade distributed ledger frameworks and ensure the transparency and interoperability required to bring blockchain technologies forward to mainstream commercial adoption. All in all, it was a stimulating and enriching few days in New York that proved to be perfect timing for building on Syniverse and IBM’s new blockchain solution.
We’re excited about what lies on the horizon for both our companies in this fast-moving technology space. As mentioned above, we see ourselves as particularly suited to address the complexities of clearing and settlement. Blockchain links multiple parties and data to one transaction and requires these elements to be connected in a seamless and secure way. In this area, our heritage in connecting both mobile operators and nontechnology companies ideally positions us for helping businesses deal with this ever-growing ecosystem and its related transactions.
In the same way, IBM, as one of the largest and oldest technology companies in the world, has leveraged its professionals’ skill and its technology assets to establish itself as an early blockchain leader. It’s positioned itself at the forefront of blockchain by leading advancements in transaction processing speeds, developing advanced cryptography to secure transactions, and contributing millions of lines of open source code to advance blockchain for businesses.
Together, our two companies offer a compelling solution that combines clearing-and-settlement expertise with advanced technology and blockchain development leadership. Following our recent solution launch and Board of Advisors meeting, I’m looking forward to how we build on our accomplishments in the second half of 2019.
Chris Rivera serves as Syniverse’s Chief Technology Officer, responsible for the company’s global research and development, digital and cloud transformation, network and data center design, operations, cybersecurity, and information technology (IT). His career includes more than 24 years of leadership roles in technology operations, product management, and product marketing for technology companies and government institutions. Most recently, Chris served in a variety of senior roles at Cisco Systems, including Managing Director, Chief Technology Officer, Americas Mobile and Web Providers; Senior Director, Product Line Management, Routing Technology Group; and Director, Product Line Management, Optical Networking. Prior to Cisco, he was a Product Manager at Cerent Corporation (acquired by Cisco in 1999), as well as a Marketing Manager at DSC Communications (acquired by Alcatel in 1998), and he served on the Advisory Board of Joyent, a cloud services company (acquired by Samsung in 2016). He began his career as an Operations and Electronic Systems Officer in the U.S. Navy, for which he served for five years and last held the rank of Lieutenant. Chris has a bachelor’s degree from the U.S. Naval Academy and completed coursework at the University of California at San Diego.