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Big Week for Blockchain at OpenWorld 2019

Mark Rakhmilevich
Senior Director, Blockchain Product Management

Finally caught my breath from the events at OpenWorld in SF last week and sat down to summarize the many events, sessions, labs, and customer conversations at OOW.  For anyone interested in enterprise blockchain, last week at the OOW was the epicenter of much of what’s happening in this space and key people who making it happen – our customers and partners. The Blockchain Summit kicked-off the OOW and was followed by over 30 blockchain-related sessions from Oracle and our customers, 5 Oracle demo areas covering the Oracle Blockchain Platform and four industry solutions, 3 hands-on labs, and numerous customer conversations at the CVCs and beyond.  Let me summarize it all in this post, and I will share more about the highlights in subsequent posts.

Blockchain Summit @ OOW (held on Sunday before) is now in its second year and continues to draw a lot of the best practitioners in this space.  The participants were welcomed by Wei Hu, Senior Vice President, High Availability Technologies and Frank Xiong, Group Vice President, Blockchain Product Development.  After reviewing the key Oracle Blockchain news from the last 12 months, a number of speakers shared their journey and presented their solutions built on the Oracle Blockchain Platform.  We heard from 360kompany about end-to-end KYC audit trail, Circulor about conflict minerals and sustainable supply chain traceability for EV batteries, GE about the intercompany billing on distributed ledger, Infosys about provenance and sustainability tracing in food/agriculture, Pravici about extending Oracle Loyalty Cloud with blockchain for multi-brand programs, Deloitte about a range of financial and supply chain solutions, and retraced/Cano about provenance and authenticity tracing in the fashion industry.  The Oracle team has also shared our plans and roadmap for the coming year.  A quote from Shagun Goyal, Digital Finance Transformation and Blockchain Leader, Deloitte sums it up, “I must say it was one of the best blockchain summits I have attended with various clients sharing practical applications of Oracle blockchain.”  Thanks to all the participants for making this a success and setting a high bar for the next year’s summit.


The OOW events started in force on Monday.  Both Larry Ellison and Juan Loaiza announced in their keynotes the addition of native blockchain tables in the upcoming release of Oracle Database.  Providing an append-only table type with chained hashed rows and (optionally) user signed data adds highly tamper-resistant capabilities directly in the Database, which enables many interesting applications of centralized ledgers.  More about this in a later post.

Monday also kicked off one of our two Hands-On Labs, where participants were able to work with OBP Cloud Service to set up and explore a distribution network for car manufacturers and their dealers.  This lab was also repeated on Thursday and supplemented by OBP Enterprise Edition HOL on Wednesday. In addition, Monday saw sessions on Blockchain and Microservices, Revolutionizing Finance and Supply Chain, and 360kompany solution on KYC audit trail validation that can be applied at a transaction level. 

Demo grounds opened up on Monday at 10am, and attendees had a number of blockchain-themed demos to attend in Moscone South and West:

  • Oracle Blockchain Platform: Making Enterprise Blockchain a Reality – our team’s demo booth showcasing supply chain tracking inspired by the Hyperledger Grid implementation of GS1 schemas and supply chain transactions, and an intercompany financials reconciliation demo using distributed ledger for real-time matching and netting of POs and invoices.
  • Blockchain-Enabled Supply Chain, showing a proof of compliance across the entire value chain, supporting food processors, retailers, and consumers using blockchain and IoT technologies to help detect, trace, and recall suspected products in a timely manner, forestalling reputational damage and financial losses.
  • Digital Supply Chain with Intelligent Track and Trace, showing the first Oracle SCM application built on the Oracle Blockchain Platform.  The recently released Intelligent Track and Trace Cloud Service, helps to track and document product-ownership changes and related logistics events across a supply chain in a permanent decentralized manner.
  • Frictionless Intermodal Transit solution, which leverages Oracle's ERP, EPM, and CX capabilities with AI, IoT, and blockchain to enable new transportation mobility outcomes for automotive, mobility (Uber, Lyft, Lime), and public transportation customers. Through multiparty blockchain-enabled e-tickets it captures net new revenue, manage costs, and maximize profit, while also reducing friction for riders, increasing user privacy, and connecting people to opportunities in the next generation of passenger monetization.
  • Media and Entertainment Industry Solutions: Innovate, Delight, and Transform, showing Oracle's smart media production planning solution, which enables media and entertainment companies to more efficiently manage the entire journey of content productions in the media enterprise, from concept and budget to the profitability of the content franchise through ERP, EPM, and SCM clouds augmented by blockchain, AI, and mobile cloud technologies.

Monday night the Oracle for Startups team ran an event to connect Oracle mentors with the Startups attending the OOW, and we had a chance to connect with a number of the attending startups looking to leverage Oracle Blockchain. Thanks to the Startups and the Oracle team working with them!


Tuesday was the day for “What’s New in Oracle Blockchain Platform”, a product roadmap and strategy session by Frank Xiong and Deepak Goel, with Gary Crisci from GE sharing the customer view of OBP and its application in the Intercompany billing solution.  Also on Tuesday, Wei Hu presented “Cutting-Edge New Tech in Oracle Database: Microservices, Blockchain, Streaming.”  And there was a number of blockchain solution sessions focusing on:

  • Physical and Digital Retailing presented by the Consumer Markets solutions team
  • Containing the Opioid Crisis presented by Oracle’s Reston, VA solution hub team
  • Healthcare Delivery and Healthcare Payer solutions presented by myself and Srini Venkat, VP Product Management & Development, Oracle Health Insurance in the Financial Services GBU
  • Ethical Sourcing of Conflict Minerals presented by Circulor

The traditional “Oracle Cloud: The Next Big Things” session is always a hit at OOW, and Ashish Mohindroo, VP Marketing, was joined by Douglas Johnson-Poensgen, CEO and Founder of Circulor to showcase the use of Oracle Blockchain Platform in ensuring sustainable sourcing of the electric vehicles batteries supplies by Volvo Cars, where Circulor application enables tracking of cobalt from source to battery units from both the mining and recycling sources.

And what a better way to cap off the day than with one of our blockchain customers being recognized in the Oracle Excellence Awards ceremony. Standard Chartered PLC is a British multinational banking and financial services company that operates primarily in Asia, Africa, and the Middle East was a Cloud Innovations Award winner in the Applications Development (Blockchain) category. Their innovation lab in Singapore was recognized for the unique asset tokenization solution built on OBP.  But this deserves a separate post.

And we are only half-way through the OOW! 


Wednesday was kicked off with my session with GE’s Gary Crisci on “Modernizing Intercompany Billing Using a Permissioned Blockchain Platform”, which was a personal highlight I will detail in a separate post.  It also saw our 2nd HOL: “Run Oracle Blockchain Platform Enterprise Edition Locally in Your Data Center”, which allowed the participants to simulate on-premises deployment of OBP starting with OBP VM images and creating blockchain instances to explore how to deploy and manage the on-premises edition of OBP.  In the afternoon I was excited to co-present with Gurdeep Kalra from Infosys on “Tokenization Smart Contract” in a loyalty/rewards solution as part of sustainability tracking in food/agriculture.  And we capped off the day by presenting with Bala Vellanki a session on “Oracle Autonomous Data Warehouse and Blockchain: Better Together, which focused on the many ways ADW can be leveraged through built-in OBP transaction data synchronization to ADW as well as how data warehouse projects can benefit from using OBP for tracking lineage and provenance of the ingested data sets.

Enough about my day.  We also had customer and partner sessions on:

  • Making Blockchain a Reality for Retailers and Brands, a Consumer Markets solutions team-organized panel with a number of our retail customers
  • Helping Reduce Carbon Emissions and Find the Tastiest Steak, a session presented by Karl O'Connell, CIO of Irish Cattle Breeding Federation (ICBF)
  • Blockchain in Action: Voting in Elections, presented by Lonneke Dikmans, CTO, eProseed Europe s.a.
  • Automating Supply Chains by Putting Business Logic on the Blockchain, presented by Jens Lusebrink, EMEA Principal Blockchain Consultant and Max Titz, Customer Innovation Executive from Oracle


Thursday is always a tough day at OOW following the Customer Appreciation Concert on Wednesday night.  And this year the newly re-branded Oracle CloudFest.19 featured John Mayer at the newly opened Chase Center in SF’s former shipyard area.  Beautiful new venue and a great concert. 

But despite the late Wednesday night festivities, a number of people came on Thursday to our repeat of the hands-on-lab and attended our product sessions on:

  • Best Practices in Protecting Data Confidentiality in Blockchain Projects, which I will share as an upcoming blog post
  • Oracle Blockchain Platform Integration with OAuth 2.0 by Tapas Pramanik, Principal Technical Support Engineer, Oracle
  • Best Practices for Developing Advanced Blockchain Solutions by Todd Little, Chief Architect, Blockchain Platform, Oracle
  • A Top-Secret Recipe for Smart Contracts and Blockchain Network Topology Design by Bala Vellanki, Director of Product Management, Blockchain Platform, Oracle
  • Trust and Visibility in Business Networks Using Oracle Intelligent Track and Trace by Michael Richter, Director Product Marketing, Emerging Technologies and Prasen Palvankar, Senior Director Product Management, Oracle - the recently released first SCM application in the Blockchain Applications Cloud portfolio,

By the way, all session presentations should be available on the Oracle OpenWorld page within a week or so.  

My personal highlight on Thursday was the customer panel, "Enterprise Blockchain Is Real: Production Apps on Oracle Blockchain Platform", featuring presentations and Q&A with 360kompany, retraced, and Beretta – two startups and the oldest firearm and manufacturing company in the world with 500 years of tradition.  If your company falls somewhere between a startup and 500 years old, you too could leverage enterprise blockchain to propel your business higher. Follow this blog to learn more in follow-on posts and reach out to your Oracle account team contacts. 

Great deal of thanks to Oracle’s extended blockchain team and our customers and partners for making this a great OOW and the best blockchain program of 2019! 

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