Three Blockchain Solutions ‘Put to the Test’

In partnership with TMG and CO-OP Financial Services, Mercator Advisory Group releases blockchain research briefing and evaluation matrix  


DES MOINES, Iowa and RANCHO CUCAMONGA, California (October 25, 2016) – As part of their effort to create clarity around blockchain technology in the financial industry, Mercator Advisory Group, TMG and CO-OP Financial Services are today releasing two blockchain resources for community based financial institutions. The first is a research brief, “Are Blockchain Solutions Ready? Three Blockchain Solutions Put to the Test.” It is available at bit.ly/blockchainbrief. The second, a strategic decision framework developed by the three companies, is a tool designed to help financial institutions evaluate the impact and implications of blockchain solutions. It is available at bit.ly/blockchainframework.

In June 2016, the three companies developed the strategic decision framework to evaluate the use cases of different blockchain solutions. Importantly, the framework was designed to evaluate blockchain solutions’ readiness for deployment in the highly regulated industry of financial services. Using this framework, Mercator’s team of analysts evaluated three blockchain solutions identified in partnership with TMG and CO-OP:

• Evernym, an open-source global identity network built on a permissioned distributed ledger.
• Guardtime, a suite of products that rely on an immutable ledger to verify the integrity of system files, applications and databases.
• Ripple, a blockchain solution that settles cross-currency payments by directly connecting financial institutions.
“After reviewing the research briefing, financial institutions will come away with a firm understanding of the common issues our analysts uncovered while evaluating each of the three solutions,” said Mercator Vice President of Payments Innovation Tim Sloane. “We also provide recommendations for how security, IT and other executives in the community financial institution space can monitor the development of blockchain solutions. While we believe blockchain is still in the early development cycle, it’s important for the nation’s credit unions and community banks to stay aware of what’s happening with these technologies so they can achieve first-mover advantage when the time comes.”

“Blockchain and distributed ledger solutions present a potential for disruption, and community financial institutions are rightly curious about how the technologies may create operational and competitive advantages for their organizations,” said TMG CEO Shazia Manus. “Our collective goal is to make it easier for credit unions and community banks to see through the hype understand the intricacies of the technologies and rely on us for the real-talk of emerging innovations. This research is exactly that – a succinct report from expert analysts experienced at distilling large collections of information down to the most important facts.”

Todd Clark, President/CEO of CO-OP, added, “Mercator’s research describes blockchain technology and identifies an evaluation checklist and selection process that will be extremely valuable for credit unions as they consider adopting the technology. In particular, Mercator’s recommendations are made in the light of the highly regulated aspects of financial services, which will help our clients make real-world decisions about blockchain.”

About Mercator Advisory Group
Mercator Advisory Group is the leading independent research and advisory services firm exclusively focused on the payments and banking industries. The firm deliver pragmatic and timely research and advice designed to help our clients uncover the most lucrative opportunities to maximize revenue growth and contain costs. To learn more, visit www.mercatoradvisorygroup.com.

About CO-OP Financial Services
CO-OP Financial Services is a financial technology company that supports 3,500 credit unions and 60 million members by providing a cutting-edge suite of customizable tools and services. The company was the first in its industry to merge purpose, innovation and technology to help credit unions advance the industry mission of people helping people. To learn more visit www.co-opfs.org.

About TMG
TMG is dedicated to creating customized, technology-driven card processing and payment solutions for credit unions and community-based financial institutions across North America. Innovations in fraud management, loyalty programs, alternative payment systems and analytic reporting, and the competitive advantages they create, have helped TMG forge a new standard in offering cutting-edge credit, debit, ATM, prepaid card products and a P2P payment solution. For more information, visit www.tmg.global.