A blockchain network is a distributed ledger full of “blocks” of data that make up an immutable chain. Two compelling features of blockchain ledgers are that they cannot be modified retroactively, making them very secure. They can also be used anonymously to address privacy concerns. Blockchain has many applications, and many innovative blockchain companies want to gain market share.
For example, blockchain is the technology that underpins the cryptocurrency sector. But let’s face it, there are many concerns about what a regulated cryptocurrency looks like. That’s not the reason to consider investing in game-changing blockchain companies.
Instead, investors may want to look to more “boring” sectors like supply chains, banking, finance, and healthcare as opportunities to find disruptive blockchain companies working behind the scenes.
Unfortunately, many cutting-edge blockchain companies are not publicly traded. And with the state of the IPO market, they won’t be going public anytime soon. That’s OK. In this market, it’s no time to swing for the fences.
Fortunately, when looking for innovative blockchain companies, you can still look at some established names, such as these three I like right now.
|IBM||International Business Machines||$125.40|
When I think about Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN), blockchain technology is not the first thing that comes to mind. However, when looking for innovative blockchain companies, it seems only natural to include a company that has been an innovator in e-commerce and cloud computing as one with the potential to further disrupt this space.
Indeed, Amazon isn’t a stranger to the blockchain world. The company’s Amazon Managed Blockchain is part of its Amazon Web Services (AWS) business. This fully-managed service “makes it easy to join public networks or create and manage scalable private networks.” The blockchains are created on one of two open-source networks: Hyperledger Fabric or Ethereum (ETH-USD).
Amazon didn’t mention exactly how much revenue comes from Amazon Managed Blockchain. However, in 2022, the company reported $80.1 billion in AWS segment sales, a 29% year-over-year increase. And considering that AWS commands the largest market share in the cloud computing sector at 33%, there’s plenty of opportunity for growth, as blockchain technology moves from a niche space to more of a mainstream sector.
According to the research firm Euromonitor International, and reported by The Wall Street Journal, the number of ATMs in the United States has declined by nearly 19,000 in just the last few years. That’s all the evidence you need to realize we’re becoming an increasingly cashless society.
Mastercard (NYSE:MA) has been at the forefront of peer-to-peer lending. And with blockchain technology, there are even more opportunities for the company. One opportunity blockchain opens up is the ability to make seamless and lower-fee cross-border transactions. Currently, moving money internationally can take days, and tends to incur high fees. Thus, a blockchain-based system could remove both those barriers.
Mastercard is reassessing its cryptocurrency relationships, in light of the recent controversies in this sector. However, it also has approximately 90 blockchain patents to help create secure and seamless solutions for its customers.
At 36-times earnings, MA stock is expensive, but analysts still have a moderate buy rating on the stock with a mean price target of $435.28. This implies 16% upside than its current price, at the time of writing.
International Business Machines (IBM)
International Business Machines (NYSE:IBM) may not be the first name that comes to mind when you think of innovative companies in general, and creative blockchain companies in particular. But the venerable Big Blue has pivoted into the hybrid cloud market in the last several years. And part of that pivot has been an investment in blockchain technology.
IBM Blockchain allows businesses to digitize supply chain transactions through a secured and distributed ledger. It also allows its customers to write smart contracts and access crypto wallets. Further, IBM Blockchain is helping to promote central bank digital currencies (CBDCs), which will accelerate the move to a cashless world.
In 2022, the company generated $22.4 billion from its hybrid cloud business, a year-over-year increase of 11%. And investors who are concerned about the eye-popping valuation of 55-times earnings should also note that IBM stock offers a dividend yield of 5.3%, a dividend the company has increased in each of the last 29 years.
On the date of publication, Chris Markoch did not have (either directly or indirectly) any positions in the securities mentioned in this article. The opinions expressed in this article are those of the writer, subject to the InvestorPlace.com Publishing Guidelines.