Revolution or Hype – Distributed: Trade Offers First Blockchain Conference on Trade and Financial Services

There is a ton of talk about blockchain and how distributed ledgers can solve so many issues, but what is really going on beyond proof of concepts and a foot in the water with the technology? Blockchain technology has held out the promise of changing the existing trust intermediaries and making existing ones potentially unnecessary.

Will this technology really revolutionize how business is done?

Industry thought leaders will look to engage around this topic on June 14, 2016 in St. Louis at Distributed: Trade, the first global conference event focusing on blockchain technology applications for both trade networks and financial services. Hosted by Washington University in St. Louis, the event is sponsored by innovators Gem, Fluent, RGAx, E&Y and Thomson Reuters.

Distributed: Trade will bring the industry’s leading blockchain technology companies together with major enterprises to discover how the new technology will disrupt and optimize trade networks and financial services. A homage to the classical meaning of “trade,” the event’s program centers around blockchain developments related to supply chain management, global payments, insurance services and capital market operations.

Executive leaders and tech entrepreneurs speaking at the event include: Chris Patteson, Director, Transaction Risk, Collaboration and Intelligence, FedEx; Jimmie Lenz, Senior Vice President, Wells Fargo; Madhav Goparaju, Executive Director, Financial Services Advisory, EY; Micah Winkelspecht, CEO, Gem, an enterprise blockchain application platform; and Lamar Wilson, CEO, Fluent, an enterprise blockchain platform powering applications designed to increase efficiency in global trade and supply chain finance.  I am excited to be moderating a panel on How Blockchain Will Underpin the Future of Global Trade Finance.

Distributed: Trade attendees will include professionals from leading industry startups, investment firms, financial services institutions, logistics services providers, corporate treasurers and CFOs, manufacturers and academic and policy groups worldwide.

This event will be a great environment to share information on many topics. For example, can smart contracts really slash back-office costs and create new lending opportunities? What incentives are needed to make things happen for a trade environment?

Bloomberg recently discussed the high profile invoice finance fraud in the China Qingdao port two years ago when multiple invoices were used for the same collateral, bilking banks like Standard Chartered Plc, which lost almost $200 million.  Now, StanChart, together with DBS Group Holdings Ltd. have piloted an electronic ledger of invoices.  The project is code-named TradeSafe.

The event is being presented collaboratively by BTC Media, the world’s largest Bitcoin and blockchain-focused media company, and SixThirty, a leading fintech accelerator in the U.S.

For more information or to register, visit

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