Yesterday, Kuwaiti telecoms firm Zain Group joined the Hedera Governing Council as the first member from the Middle East.
Hedera Hashgraph is a type of decentralized technology but not a blockchain. Based on proprietary code, it claims the distributed ledger technology (DLT) is faster, more secure, and scalable than current blockchains.
The Hedera Governing Council is developing a decentralized governance model and aims to have 39 members from diverse industries and regions. With Zain Group joining, the Council now has a total of 15 members, four of which are telecoms firms and four IT / technology companies.
As part of the Hedera Council, Zain aims to get first-hand experience in the DLT space and plans to assess applications relevant to its sector. The company is a member of the telecoms consortium Carrier Blockchain Study Group (CBSG).
Zain Group has over 49 million active subscribers with a presence in eight countries in the Middle East. The company had an annual turnover of $5.5 billion as of December 2019.
“From our own perspective, the growing list of new services and applications we have and continue to develop in areas such as the Group API platform; mobile money and fintech; e-health; drones; the Internet of Things; and 5G all lend themselves to further enhancement through blockchain and other distributed ledger technologies,” said Bader Al Kharafi Vice-Chairman and Group CEO at Zain.
“We believe the Council will be enriched greatly by this first organization to join us from the Middle East region, given Zain Group’s eight country footprint,” said Mance Harmon, CEO of Hedera.
Hedera is a public DLT with only governance members running the consensus nodes that can write data.
The Hedera Governing Council’s members are also tasked with directing the technology roadmap, contributing technical expertise, advising on business operations and providing input into legal and regulatory matters.
The full list of Hedera Governing Council members is Boeing, Deutsche Telekom, DLA Piper, FIS (WorldPay), Google, IBM, Magalu, Nomura, Swirlds, Swisscom Blockchain, Tata Communications, University College London (UCL), Wipro and now the Zain Group.