Fundamental Pick: Power Ledger

 

 

THE WORLD LEADING PEER-TO-PEER MARKETPLACE FOR RENEWABLE ENERGY

 

SYNOPSIS


It is no secret that global warming has been at the top of the world’s agenda over the past decade. However, whether such high-level conversations yield beneficial results is extremely questionable.

As a result, the energy sector has been of heavy interest in the business sector, with many firms trying to find solutions to provide for what will inevitably be a green future. Despite such efforts, one key party in the equation is clearly missing, the consumers who require the energy in the first place. Without empowering communities themselves to change their energy habits, demand for such green energy will remain low and ultimately the cost of respecting the planet will remain high.

Blockchain technology may provide one avenue to solve the world’s energy crisis, and Power Ledger (POWR) appear to have placed themselves at the forefront of this sustainable revolution.

POWR propose a decentralised model which cuts out middlemen and places the power in the hands of the consumers themselves. One might wonder why consumers would want such a responsibility, the answer lies in that they will be provided with the opportunity to profit from their own green habits. Users of the project will be able to buy and sell unused renewable energy utilising the Ethereum blockchain to record their consumption and production. Transactions will be made using the native POWR token which can be held for speculation, stored for future use or sold back to the users’ fiat currency of choice. All users of the network are required to install solar panels to produce such energy and as a result, the project promotes solely green energy.

The system works as follows, individuals produce energy to cater for their individual needs and if they have any surplus energy they can sell this energy peer-to-peer to another user who has not produced enough energy to cater for their household consumption. The privately generated energy can be transmitted through existing traditional infrastructure to consumers in need. This initiative allows consumers to manage their own energy and chose the destiny of their own fate. If they chose to provide additional energy by purchasing more solar panel units then they will likely profit long-term. Alternatively, if users cannot afford to buy many solar panel units or chose not to they will have energy slightly subsidised by what they own and buy the rest through the POWR marketplace.

Consequently, the POWR marketplace encourages users to be as green as possible by becoming efficient prosumers in order to reap the rewards of the system. This innovative economic approach to promoting the use of renewable energy is extremely unique compared to traditional models as a result of Blockchain technology allowing individuals to immutably trust each other and trade without needing to confirm energy will be sent or that payments will be made.

Ultimately, this should empower communities to go greener by placing a large emphasis on the economic returns of such a decision. As the world continues to overuse raw materials and abuse the earth, global warming is certain to stay at the forefront of global debate, consequently, unique solutions such as POWR certainly have the potential to become extremely popular in years to come.

For this reason, Power Ledger could see substantial growth if they achieve their goals and is certainly a project to keep an eye on long-term.

 

CATALYSTS


diverse team comprising of both blockchain specialists and conservation experts, Co-founder Dr Jemma Green has multiple PHDs from the University of Cambridge relating to renewable energy
Power Ledger have already completed trials of the project in Australia which allowed consumers access to cheaper renewable energy than available from large distributors and to profit from their surplus energy, a rare proof of concept not regularly seen in the Blockchain space
The consumer/prosumer economic model proposed will likely become more desirable as green energy turns mainstream as a result of global regulations and energy restrictions
Although the project is built on top of the Ethereum Blockchain it is highly adaptable and could be employed on any Blockchain platform if the market dynamics change in the future.

 

RISK FACTORS


The project is highly dependent on whether renewable energy becomes widely utilised by individuals in the future, although with strict UN regulations already in place and consumers becoming more conscious, this shift in the market already appears to be taking place
There are several other Blockchain firms trying to solve the energy crisis including Grid+ and WePower, although such projects are yet to have a proof of concept
Power Ledgers business model means that wealthy individuals will benefit the most as they have the purchasing power to buy more solar units initially, although even those who cannot afford solar panels should be able to benefit from cheaper prices as a result of intense peer-to-peer market competition

 

CONCLUSION


As individuals become more conscious of their carbon footprint and regulating bodies tighten energy use from non-renewable resources, renewable energy use is only set to become more prevalent in mainstream society. When this occurs, individuals will seek the most cost-efficient way to consume their energy. If Power Ledger can empower communities by helping them realise the economic and environmental benefits of such an application, they have the potential of becoming a market leader in the space. Thus, POWR should be on your long-term watchlist.


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Fundamental Pick: Basic Attention Token

Image result for basic attention token logo

 

INTRODUCING BLOCKCHAIN-BASED DIGITAL ADVERTISING

 

SYNOPSIS


Currently, the world of digital marketing is controlled by a few major players within the market, namely Google and Facebook, who account for an overwhelming 73% share of all ad revenue. Such a duopoly has negative consequences for the entire ecosystem that includes advertisers, publishers and consumers. Perhaps most poignant, however, is how centralisation has allowed certain countries to influence foreign elections by simply buying a majority share of adverts on a single platform that users consume. With stories like these clearly in the headlines, consumers are becoming more conscious of how their data is being used to target and exploit them into making decisions they perhaps wouldn’t have made otherwise.

Such a discontent is expressed clearly in the use of ad blocking services on more than 600 million devices globally. This circumvents advertisers’ ability to profit from influencing users decisions, publishers capacity to operate free services for their user base and consumers ability to view advertisements they may actually be interested in. Basic Attention Token (BAT) is aiming to solve this problem with their decentralised digital advertising based on their native Brave browser. Before one questions BAT’s ability to shift a user base from dominant browsers such as Chrome, it is key to note that the CEO of BAT invented both Firefox and JavaScript. Brave works as follows, the browser monitors how users interact with the web anonymously based on their attention to a particular advertisement, it then only provides adverts which fit the users’ profile history and significantly reduces the bandwidth needed by blocking irrelevant ads. Consequently, creating a unique user experience catered directly to the individual consumer. Ultimately, this allows advertisers to only pay for viewers who are almost certainly interested in their content, publishers to provide interesting content tailored to their consumers and a far more pleasant user experience for the consumer. Evidently, this allows for a mutually beneficial ecosystem dissimilar to what one experiences today.

The BAT token is utilised on the Brave platform by becoming the native currency for advertisers to pay publishers for promoting content. Additionally, users earn BAT tokens when they choose to view ads, this amount will be determined by a machine-learning algorithm that determines how long a user is viewing content by the pixel-height of the window. Finally, unlike the majority of cryptocurrencies on the market today, BAT presents a clear use case for its product that is easily understood by any layman. With a CEO who has outstanding relevant experience and a fully functioning Brave browser already present, this service could easily take off as the current model continues to fail. Thus, Basic Attention Token appears an interesting proposition and should be monitored closely over the coming months.

 

CATALYSTS


  • BAT’s CEO Brendan Eich is a well-respected individual in the technology community with a proven track record after creating JavaScript code and co-founding Firefox
  • The project appears to be mutually beneficial for all parties in the advertising ecosystem – consumers user experience is becoming increasingly negatively impacted by advertising hence the heavy use of ad blockers and publishers have lost 66% of their ad revenue in the past decade
  • The Brave Privacy browser already has more than 2 million active monthly users
  • The project provided a bounty to YouTube influencers to incentivise them to use the platform, such initiatives could continue to grow their user base once content creators reek the benefits
  • BAT has recently acquired a Partnership with DuckDuckGo, a search engine platform which caters to individuals who value their privacy

 

RISKS


  • BAT relies on users adopting the Brave platform, without such adoption their business model will be worthless – Brave does, however, present numerous benefits for users such as essentially passive revenue for viewing ads and a more personalised viewing experience – Thus, communicating this value proposition to all parties within the advertising ecosystem will be key to their success
  • Battling technology giants such as Chrome will certainly be difficult – although BAT is considering integration with numerous major players by creating a browser add-on which achieves the same goal
  • Two other Blockchain firms are attempting to tackle this unique problem, AdShares and Papyrus, although they seem to focus on advertisers and publishers whilst forgetting users benefits

 

CONCLUSION


Blockchain technology can often be incredibly difficult to understand for the average individual. Concepts such as BAT may help educate the general population by providing value without needing extensive knowledge of the underlying technology. Such invisible integration is how many individuals have begun to utilise technology in the past, history will likely repeat itself. BAT’s value proposition seems robust and mutually beneficial for all parties within the advertising ecosystem. Advertising can more effectively target their ads, publishers can streamline their content to cater to their user base and consumers can enjoy a more tailored user experience whilst getting passively paid. If Brave as a browser can truly present clear advantages over the incumbent browser giants or BAT can achieve integration via an add-on, then the project has true potential. With an outstanding CEO who holds a proven track record of true innovation and a solid business model, Basic Attention Token is certainly one to add to your watchlist.