Blockchain tech incubator firm could spark jobs

Thursday 13th July 2017 2:14 am
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Brian Donegan, head of operations - eBusiness at the DED and Gabriel Dusil, co-founder of Adel, the blockchain technology incubator ()

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A technology business using cutting edge blockchain technology could ultimately help to bring jobs to the island, it has been claimed.

Adel is a global ’crytocurrency community’ aimed at developing, supporting and funding innovative startups through a business model called a blockchain technology incubator.

It is aimed at investing in and developing blockchain start-ups.

The enterprise has recently registered as a limited liability company (LLC) in the island and a leading figure from the business has been in the island on a fact-finding trip.

Gabriel Dusil, the co-founder of Adel, spoke to Business News just minutes after a high-powered visit to the offices of the Isle of Man Financial Services Authority.

Mr Dusil, who is from Prague in the Czech Republic, said: ’Our relationship with the Isle of Man is important to us.’

Brian Donegan, head of operations for eBusiness and Fintech innovation at the Department of Economic Development, told Business News: ’I think the Adel ecosystem is unique in terms of what they are setting out to do. They are setting out to create a fully compliant business in the digital space, in the crypto space.

’The incubator model thay have will attract existing digital start-ups to sit inside that incubator but using the particular coins system that Adel have developed and that makes it unique.

’We think that in time, all going well, the Adel business can have a presence in the island and that presence could potentially generate some jobs .

’If that works for Adel then why wouldn’t it work for lots of other businesses to follow Adel.

’In other words we see a potential sector in this space to be developed.’

Gabriel Dusil said ’Obviously our discussions with Brian have been fruitful, I could not say it better than that.’

He added: ’We literally started the company at the beginning of June. We ran an initial coin offering, an introduction of a new coin in the crypto space, and that was essentially the launch of the Adel ecosystem.

’The Isle of Man govern ment created a legal framework for us which can actually run that initiative. So it was important for us to register as an LLC here in the island.

’We wanted that legal basis and as part of that legal basis we were required by the government to be KYC (Know Your Customer), AML (Anti Money Laundering) and CTF (Counter Terrorism Financing) compliant.

’We saw that as an asset because we felt that it helps to legitimise the crypto industry and bring crypto to the mainstream.’

Brian Donegan said Mr Dusil and Adel would not be taking an interest in the island if the government had not made important decisions several years ago.

He explained that a decade ago the government decided to go into the whole area of digital business.

He said eGaming was the initial area chosen. ’It represented a huge opportunity for jobs and for revenue. We also needed to mitigate the risks associated with that business by having the best of breed regulation that we could build and we built it from the ground up.

’From the moment we did that we attracted the best brand names in the world including PokerStars, Microgaming and Playtech.

’Today eGaming has become 19 per cent of our GDP, it is absolutely huge. When we add in other things such as computer software etc, that figure rises to 28 per cent of GDP. So eBusiness is a significant part of our economy.

’The relevance of that is that in 2013 we started to get a lot of interest from digital currency groups who chose the Isle of Man because they saw a convergence between digital currencies and eGaming, with players and operators using digital currencies.’

Mr Donegan went on to explain: ’In the Isle of Man we are very strict about keeping crime out and protecting the consumer and in fact that is our watchword.

’We use regulation as a weapon to do that.

’So back in 2013 there was an opportunity for the island to create jobs, generate revenue. But we needed regulation specifically for the digital currency world.

’So we chose to develop two key pillars of regulation. One was the 2008 Proceeds of Crime Act, which we reworked and amended. The amended act captured digital currencies and we brought in the new designated business es act which essentially gave us a completeAML/KYC/CTF portfolio if you like. And that was launched in 2014.

’That has given us a lot of profile but has also meant that businesses at the premium end of the market in crypto business, which is what we are interested in, are attracted to the island because of our regulation, our strict compliance standards and these are the businesses that see regulation and compliance as a good thing, not negative.

’It is on that basis thatwe have had success.’

Mr Donegan said he was sure Adel saw the opportunity in their particular industry to have a business model that was fully compliant around AML/KYC/CTF .

He stressed: ’That whole business of keeping crime out is our watchword.

’We have to protect ourselves in this.’

And Mr Donegan’s message from the DED and the government appears to be one backed by Mr Dusil, who was accompanied on his visit by fellow Adel people Jan Lamser and Michal Vavrek.

He said that when Adel was set up ’it was vital to set a precedent of what we stand for.

’We stand for ethical behaviour, legal behaviour and moral behaviour.

’When we were working with the Isle of Man there was complete synergy in working in such a framework.

’We actually wrote a white paper on the philosophy. Any project we bring into the eco system has to follow this philosophy.

’We are not setting any false claims. We want to create jobs, we want to innovate and create projects thatwill change the world. That is part of our mantra, to bring projects that will literally change the world and help society.

’Block chain is not just about Fintech (financial technology) There’s blockchain projects in healthcare, e Government, internet of things, ICT (Information and communication technology).’

Brian Donegan, head of operations - eBusiness at the DED and Gabriel Dusil, co-founder of Adel

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