In our recent article "Blockchain:the energy storm is coming" we briefly discussed the potential for blockchain technology to revolutionise the way the energy market works. Focusing on electricity market trading we identified the potential of blockchain to streamline and expedite transactions and even to promote competition amongst key players. 

Two recent pilots  (BTL and Proton) show how this could work in practice. The BTL pilot focusses on the post-trade communications, the work that the "back office" of the organisations will have to undertake to reconcile the transactions concluded by the "front office".  AsJules Besnainou explains a lot of the post-trade communication is done by the traditional (and not always secure) means of email and fax. Blockchain technology has the ability to make the reconciliation process more seamless by ensuring that the trading houses involved in each transaction work from a "shared ledger" that is simultaneously accessible to all participants. This would not only remove the potential for human error but would also make transactions more secure. 

 The Proton pilot is focussed on the "trade" itself and aims at promoting peer-to-peer trading thus removing the need for third party intermediaries. Michael Merz, MD of Proton, hopes to exploit this peer-to-peer trading by adding a trading data capture element to the blockchain software. The data thus captured can then be made available to all for free. 

 These are only two of the projects that are currently being piloted and we expect many more to come forward in the next few months. We look forward to working with key players to assist them in their journey to the {almost!) limitless possibilities of blockchain.  Do contact us on chris.pritchett@footanstey.com aliki.zeri@footanstey.com or stuart.cleak@footanstey.com for advice or even further chat - we are always keen to talk!