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Samsung, Emirates chair backed enterprise blockchain firm launches in UAE

Sheikh Ahmed Bin Saeed Al Maktoum

Today it was reported that Blocko, a South Korean enterprise blockchain company, has launched in the UAE after support from the chair of the Emirates Group. Sheikh Saeed bin Ahmed Al Maktoum’s SEED Group partnered with Blocko to bring its blockchain platform to the Middle East.

Sheikh Al Maktoum’s Private Office, which runs SEED and Emirates, is worth over $35 billion and first partnered with Blocko in August.

Blocko offers an enterprise blockchain platform with a difference. It utilized its open-source Aergo technology to build Aergo Enterprise, a hybrid private-public blockchain for business. This is made possible by custom sidechains, allowing customers to reap the benefits of immutability and trust from a public platform, plus the control and scalability of a private one.

The firm already boasts over 20 clients such as Samsung and Hyundai in its native Korea, plus $16 million in funding from the likes of Shinhan Bank, Samsung Ventures, and KEB Hana Bank. Thanks to its partnership with SEED, Blocko will now bring its Aergo platform to the UAE.

The founder and CEO of Aergo and co-CEO of Blocko, Phil Zamani, said: “We launched Aergo in response to the growing need for data sharing between industries and companies in areas such as identity verification, document management and the Internet of Things – the same areas in which the Middle East in particular is seeking practical solutions.”

Indeed, the UAE has championed blockchain development with last year’s release of the official Emirates Blockchain Strategy 2021. By then, the government hopes to perform 50% of its transactions using the technology. It already has projects in credentialing for healthcare and cross border payments, while the Dubai government uses blockchain for reconciliation, payments, and mortgages.

“The UAE and the wider Middle East region are constantly seeking advanced blockchain solutions for government and digital services. And so, we recognised the partnership with Blocko and Aergo as a solution to satisfy the increasing need for companies working at the highest level of scale and security,” stated Hisham Al Gurg, CEO of SEED Group and The Private Office of Sheikh Al Maktoum.

He continued: “They have the right expertise to deliver blockchain solutions effectively that, in turn, will enable the UAE to make its digital promise a reality for its government departments, citizens and businesses.”

Phil Zamani added: “Having already built 38 full-scale enterprise blockchain solutions in South Korea for companies like Samsung, Cisco, Hyundai Motors, and also Gyeonggi-do province, we are now ready to join forces with organisations in this region who are ready to embrace blockchain[.]“