Blockchain Africa Conference – Johannesburg

Blockchain Technology: Moving Africa Forward

The African continent has massive challenges with transactions and doing business that, with the help of blockchain technology, can be transformed into simpler and more efficient ways of working.

The focus of the Johannesburg conference is on blockchain enterprise development, blockchain use-cases, Self-Sovereign Identity, enterprise blockchain in finance (cross-border payments, remittances, financial inclusion, interbank settlements), the future of banking, as well as challenges facing blockchain technology such as interoperability and scalability. Which solutions are addressing scalability and what are the interesting blockchain technologies to look out for?

The conference will also explore tokenisation of assets, blockchain and cybersecurity, blockchain in government and health care, smart contracts, stable coins, the future of Initial Coin Offerings (ICOs) and Security Token Offerings (STOs).

Cryptocurrency Regulation: Current Issues, Future Challenges and Proposals
2018 was partly defined by the increasing scrutiny by regulators of the crypto and blockchain industries and 2019 will see even more attention from regulators.

The conference will discuss various jurisdictions regulations regarding ICOs, STOs, blockchain technology and cryptocurrencies, the creation of sandbox environments and the success thereof,  and concerns regulators have with Anti-Money Laundering (AML) and consumer protection. Legal experts and regulators will discuss finding the balance between regulation and innovation and what recommendations are being put forward for a successful regulatory framework.

If your business is in or with Africa and your target is growth, the Blockchain Africa Conference 2019 is a must attend.

REGISTER FOR JOHANNESBURG

Johannesburg Speaker List

Farzam Ehsani (Master of Ceremonies)

Farzam Ehsani (Master of Ceremonies)

CEO and Co-Founder of VALR.com
Brian Behlendorf (Keynote Speaker)

Brian Behlendorf (Keynote Speaker)

Executive Director of Hyperledger Project
Phillip Windley

Phillip Windley

Chair and Board of Trustees at the Sovrin Foundation
Loretta Joseph

Loretta Joseph

Fintech and Regulatory Consultant to Financial Services Commission Mauritius, Blockchain Advisor at OECD, Fintech Advisor in Bermuda
Emile Burger

Emile Burger

Group Chief Operating Officer at BankservAfrica
Saj Abraham

Saj Abraham

Director of Technology at Techno Brain Limited
Ray Youssef

Ray Youssef

CEO and Co-Founder of Paxful
Anrich Daseman

Anrich Daseman

Senior Fintech Specialist at the South African Reserve Bank (SARB)
Dean Joffe

Dean Joffe

Associate at Baker McKenzie and Co-Founder at BitFund
Justin Evans

Justin Evans

Head Of Experience and Digital Product Design at 22seven
Nick Saponaro

Nick Saponaro

Co-Founder and Lead Developer of The Divi Project
Kyle Hauptfleisch

Kyle Hauptfleisch

Head of Business Development at BVNK Ltd
Carel de Jager

Carel de Jager

Instructor at the Blockchain Academy and Engineer
Jean Paul Fabri

Jean Paul Fabri

Managing Director at ARQ
Björn Peterson

Björn Peterson

Solutions Engineer at Rehive
Paresh Daya

Paresh Daya

Blockchain Strategist at Standard Bank
Charlene Chen

Charlene Chen

Co-Founder and Chief Operating Officer at BitPesa
Nick von Christierson

Nick von Christierson

Head of Africa at Diginex
Mandla Magagula

Mandla Magagula

Blockchain Lead Engineer at Rand Merchant Bank
PROF. Angela Itzikowitz

PROF. Angela Itzikowitz

Director at ENSafrica’s Banking and Finance Department
Matthew Arnett

Matthew Arnett

Co-Founder and CEO of PO8 and Fort NFT Protocol
Kelly Parkhurst

Kelly Parkhurst

Lead: New Digital CIB, Absa
Ashlin Perumall

Ashlin Perumall

Senior Associate at Baker McKenzie
Michelle Nsanzumuco

Michelle Nsanzumuco

Chair of the International Committee/Senior Regional Advisor (Africa) at the British Blockchain Association (BBA) and Executive Education Lead at University of Surrey Business School, UK
Anushka Soma-Patel

Anushka Soma-Patel

Identity Stream Lead for the SAFBC (South African Financial Blockchain Consortium) and Business Specialist: Innovation and Culture within Old Mutual
Gerhard Dinhof

Gerhard Dinhof

Senior Architect and Blockchain Country Lead for IBM South Africa
Peter Munnings

Peter Munnings

Co-Founder and COO of Adhara
Lorien Gamaroff

Lorien Gamaroff

Founder/CEO of Bankymoon and Co-founder/CEO of Centbee
Eugéne Etsebeth

Eugéne Etsebeth

Chief Operating Officer at iCE3X
Dr. Ntuthuko Bhengu

Dr. Ntuthuko Bhengu

Health expert on the SA National Planning Commission and a Chartered Director (SA)
Tanya Knowles

Tanya Knowles

Chair of the South African Financial Blockchain Consortium
Nerushka Bowan

Nerushka Bowan

Founder of the L.I.T.T. Institute
Michael Glaros

Michael Glaros

Principal Program Manager, Azure Blockchain at Microsoft
Rocelo Lopes

Rocelo Lopes

Founder of CoinBR, CEO of Stratum and CoinPY
Nicole Anderson

Nicole Anderson

Co-Founder and Managing Partner of the Redsand Group

Johannesburg Programme

Registration
08:00am
Farzam Ehsani (Master of Ceremonies)  
Welcome Address and Opening by Master of Ceremonies
09:00am
CEO and Co-Founder of VALR.com
Lorien Gamaroff  
The State of Blockchain Technology and Cryptocurrencies
09:15am

A lot of hype exists around blockchain technology, but the use cases are limited. What are the challenges organisation face when implementing blockchain technology? What are the real use cases for this technology? Is the future of blockchain technology both permissioned and permissionless innovation?

Founder/CEO of Bankymoon and Co-founder/CEO of Centbee
Brian Behlendorf (Keynote Speaker)  
Keynote Speaker: The Post-Lambo Era: Blockchain Technology Gets Real
09:45am

Distributed shared ledgers and smart contracts are not just for micro-currencies and digital-collectables. Today there are over a hundred deployed distributed ledger networks using blockchain technology to address supply chain traceability, trade finance and global payments, logistics, know-your-customer credit history systems, digital asset tracking, and many more. 2019 will also be the year these systems are deployed at scale and in production for self-sovereign digital identity systems that address the key weaknesses in today's mainframe-style centralised ID systems. Brian will share notes on who's deploying these systems today, where the technology is coming from (hint: Hyperledger), and how much impact they are having and are set to have this year.

Executive Director of Hyperledger Project
Tea/Coffee Break
10:30am
Carel de Jager  
The Role of Stablecoins in a Decentralised Economy
10:45am

The inability to regulate the price of decentralised currencies causes them to be volatile by nature. The 3 main attributes of money, being a unit of account, medium of exchange and store of value are all hindered by volatility. The success of incentive-based consensus mechanisms is dependent on currency as a use case, while volatility might be the biggest barrier to this objective. Stablecoins provide a solution to this problem, but they require collateral to work. Balancing the collateral requires a highly liquid market to operate efficiently and building this balance into algorithmic mechanisms can be particularly challenging. During the talk, Carel will describe the critical role of stablecoins to maintain stability in a decentralised economy and the technical challenges of a decentralised stablecoin to preserve its value peg, before giving an overview of the current state of development with specific focus on Makerdao.

Instructor at the Blockchain Academy and Engineer
Dean Joffe  
Hard Lessons for Cryptocurrency Investors – a Reflection From Bull to Bear
11:05am

The desire to invest in a wide variety of cryptocurrencies, whilst protecting your investment and having transparency are readily sought for investors. This talk considers the implications of investing in cryptocurrencies against the backdrop of investors traditional investment strategies. It considers various mechanisms consumers ought to look out for, such as KYC and AML frameworks, to protect consumers in a volatile market. It also considers the debate between traditional venture capital fundraising against raising money through an initial coin offering in a bull and bear market.

Associate at Baker McKenzie and Co-Founder at BitFund
Saj Abraham  Michael Glaros  
Scaling Blockchain Networks with DevOps Practices and Habits
11:30am

This will be a joint presentation by Michael and Saj.

Director of Technology at Techno Brain Limited
Principal Program Manager, Azure Blockchain at Microsoft
Lunch
12:00pm
Peter Munnings  
Project Khokha and Beyond: A South African Blockchain Success Story
12:45pm

Project Khokha was run by the South African Reserve Bank at the beginning of 2018. The aim was to prove that high value payments between banks could be settled over a singled distributed ledger. Similar projects had been previously run by other central banks around the world, most notably Project Jasper by the Bank of Canada and Project Ubin by the Monetary Authority of Singapore. Project Khokha pushed the boundaries in numerous significant ways. Firstly, it included direct participation from 7 commercial banks. This level of co-operation on a large-scale blockchain project was unprecedented. Secondly, targets were set to make sure that the system could handle realistic volumes of transactions on a single distributed ledger without compromising the privacy and confidentiality of those transactions. Project Khokha met and exceeded all its targets. The final report is a great example of how a progressive central bank, well-equipped commercial banks and good technology partners can, in a very short time, produce a result that significantly advances the international body of knowledge around regulated systems running on a blockchain. Project Khokha went on to win the ‘Best Distributed Ledger Initiative’ award from the Central Banking Publications in Singapore in September 2018. The foundation has been laid and South Africa is now established as a leader in this space. It is up to us to build on that foundation and use the leadership position wisely.

Co-Founder and COO of Adhara
Phillip Windley  
A Global, Public Network for Self-Sovereign Identity
13:05pm

Self-sovereign identity systems, based on blockchain technology, promise to disrupt the online identity space. These new solutions provide significant advantages over current identity solutions, including increased security and privacy along with enhanced flexibility. The Sovrin Network is a public, global identity utility built on a permissioned distributed ledger. Sovrin supports distributed identity using a trustworthy system for third-party credentials. Use cases for the Sovrin identity network include authentication, financial services, healthcare, education and the Internet of Things (among others). The code is open source and since the network is public, anyone can use it. This talk will describe the problems with current models for internet identity, why a good global identity utility is needed, how Sovrin works and utilises blockchain technology, and its applications.

Chair and Board of Trustees at the Sovrin Foundation
Ashlin Perumall  
Assessing the Self-Sovereign Identity Model against the Legal Backdrop of Digital Identity
13:35pm

This talk aims to discuss the numerous benefits the SSI model has to offer legal and regulatory compliance, particularly in the realm of data privacy compliance. It will expand on some of the differences between the SSI and legal models, and the challenges these differences could create for new SSI technologies.

Senior Associate at Baker McKenzie
Paresh Daya  Mandla Magagula  Michael Glaros  Rocelo Lopes  
Panel: Blockchain Scalability: The Issues and Proposed Solutions
13:55pm

Why is blockchain scalability such an issue? Is it the most serious challenge facing blockchain technology? What are some of the solutions to solve this and are they proving successful? Is this affecting mass adoption? Moderator: Naeem Aslam

Blockchain Strategist at Standard Bank
Blockchain Lead Engineer at Rand Merchant Bank
Principal Program Manager, Azure Blockchain at Microsoft
Founder of CoinBR, CEO of Stratum and CoinPY
Gerhard Dinhof  
The Rise of New Business Networks
14:35pm

In today's connected world where globalisation is the norm for collaboration, companies are to a high degree still working with siloed data. Exchanging information is reduced to a minimum shareable set, rarely standardised and often not even digitised. IBM Food Trust, TradeLens and we.trade are consortia consisting of dozens of multinational corporations forming partnerships to disrupt their industry, working closer together than ever, increasing speed and transparency and reducing costs - all by trusting the underlying technology. On this journey, we take a look beyond the buzz and explore how blockchain is already being established as the backbone for trusted business collaboration, how it will soon affect the consumer experience, and how you are able to participate in this transformation.

Senior Architect and Blockchain Country Lead for IBM South Africa
Tea/Coffee Break
15:05pm
Nick Saponaro  
Eliminating the Friction Tax: The Path to Mass Adoption
15:20pm

The Divi Project – Divi is a new blockchain and 'Smart Wallet' created to bridge the gap between the crypto world and the masses.

Co-Founder and Lead Developer of The Divi Project
Anushka Soma-Patel  
Unpacking the Practical Use of Identity Wallets and Verified Claims within Ecosystems as We Know Them Today
15:40pm

Demo from the South African Financial Blockchain Consortium (SAFBC). The identity stream of the SAFBC is exploring the use of identity wallets and verified claims within an ecosystem with the intention of clarifying the business, governance and regulatory impacts. During this session, we will share our findings to date and demo the use case that prompted us to define the impacts.

Identity Stream Lead for the SAFBC (South African Financial Blockchain Consortium) and Business Specialist: Innovation and Culture within Old Mutual
Justin Evans  Nick von Christierson  Kelly Parkhurst  Lorien Gamaroff  Tanya Knowles  
Panel: Enterprise Blockchain in Finance
16:00pm

The future of banking: What role does blockchain technology play? How are blockchain technology and cryptocurrencies reshaping payments? What are some of the blockchain consortiums (such as Hyperledger, R3, the Ethereum Enterprise Alliance and the South African Financial Blockchain Consortium)? What are the main differences between permissioned and permissionless blockchain technology and when is each most beneficial? Initiatives for blockchain based solutions in finance? What are the real blockchain applications in finance? Are fintechs the enablers of change and how are incumbents partnering with them to innovate? What are the enablers and barriers for fintech collaboration with the finance industry? Moderator: Lorien Gamaroff

Head Of Experience and Digital Product Design at 22seven
Head of Africa at Diginex
Lead: New Digital CIB, Absa
Founder/CEO of Bankymoon and Co-founder/CEO of Centbee
Chair of the South African Financial Blockchain Consortium
Farzam Ehsani (Master of Ceremonies)  
Closing Address
16:50pm

The Master of Ceremonies will close off Day 1 of the conference.

CEO and Co-Founder of VALR.com
Cocktail and Network Event
17:00pm

The networking event will be hosted at the venue. All are welcome to attend.

Registration
08:00am
Farzam Ehsani (Master of Ceremonies)  
Welcome Address by Master of Ceremonies
09:00am
CEO and Co-Founder of VALR.com
Ray Youssef  
Africa: The Leader in Peer-to-Peer Finance Adoption
09:10am

Africa and her people are dominating the adoption of peer-to-peer finance. Armed with the relevant knowledge and resilience, Africans are in the front line of a new global ecosystem that helps everyone to be financially included. In this presentation, I'll discuss the unique situation of how African people have adapted to a new financial landscape that has given them the opportunity to take control of how they send, store and spend money through peer-to-peer technology.

CEO and Co-Founder of Paxful
Nicole Anderson  
The Institutional Challenge and Opportunity in Crypto Assets
9:45am

Crypto is an emerging institutional asset class. Family offices, hedge funds and broader multi-asset fund managers are entering the game. But unlike other traditional asset classes, liquidity, performance and risk associated with crypto assets are significant. The demand significantly exceeds supply despite the extended bear market giving rise to convoluted value chains and counterparty risk. How does a progressive institution ready itself for being relevant in the market? What skills, access, knowledge and networks are essential in the short- and mid-term? How do you build sustainability where process and standardisation are absent?

Co-Founder and Managing Partner of the Redsand Group
Dr. Ntuthuko Bhengu  
Blockchain in Healthcare
10:15am

Blockchain is expected to have a significant impact across the entire healthcare sector. Applications in drug discovery, reduction of counterfeit and sub-standard medicine, management of medicine prescriptions, prevention of fraud and sharing of clinical information through secure electronic medical records have already been identified.

Dr Bhengu will highlight relevant use cases with a particular focus on electronic medical records and how blockchain can facilitate patient-centred care by enhancing interoperability, confidentiality and generally improved doctor-patient engagements.

Dr Bhengu will discuss how blockchain will benefit entire health systems and contribute towards a reduction in healthcare costs by reducing transaction costs, inefficiencies and, in the long term, by removing some intermediaries along the value chain.

Health expert on the SA National Planning Commission and a Chartered Director (SA)
Tea/Coffee Break
10:35am
Matthew Arnett  
What a Real Security Token Offering (STO) Will Look Like and Why the Bahamas Standard is One to Follow
10:50am

The Commonwealth of the Bahamas has taken a very keen interest in the STO market in recognition of the impact it has had in transforming so many facets of investment within the financial industry. What are securities in the financial world? What is a security token offering? What’s the difference between an STO and an ICO? What are the Bahamian regulations governing STOs? Why should the world launch their STOs from the Bahamas?

Co-Founder and CEO of PO8 and Fort NFT Protocol
Loretta Joseph  
Distributed Ledgers and Digital Assets Confronting a Revolution of Change: What it Means for Regulators
11:10am
Fintech and Regulatory Consultant to Financial Services Commission Mauritius, Blockchain Advisor at OECD, Fintech Advisor in Bermuda
Emile Burger  
Blockchain is Our Generation’s 'Wheel'. But Have We Built the Road for it Yet?
11:40am

Blockchain is a great technology, but how could it truly impact an economy where a high percentage of the population do not have a formal identity let alone access to enabling information technology infrastructure. The challenges are beyond technology – it involves the human spirit. What is the place for this technology in complex societies and regions, while ensuring the technology and regulation can be used to manage security and access? Who owns the data, and could this drive collaboration beyond borders while ensuring adherence to privacy for all?

Group Chief Operating Officer at BankservAfrica
Lunch
12:00pm
Kyle Hauptfleisch  
Beyond Tokenised Money
12:45pm

The cryptocurrency community is quick to call for the downfall of traditional financial systems, but is that realistic? Or even possible? Taking a grounded view of blockchain technology and digital assets, I explore their place in a world where banking, financial controls and regulators still exist. Additionally, I explore what new roles the banks themselves can play.

Head of Business Development at BVNK Ltd
Nerushka Bowan  
Smart Contracts
13:10pm

- what does the term smart contract mean? - how does it relate to legal contracts? - how are smart contracts built? - what are the use cases? - what are the potential legal and regulatory issues?

Founder of the L.I.T.T. Institute
Michelle Nsanzumuco  
Blockchain/DLT as a Catalyst for Africa's Sustainable Growth - Supporting Capital Flows, Government and Business Efficiency
13:30pm

In today‘s volatile and complex global environment, businesses, governments and members of society at large are facing significant challenges around trade, economic instability, volatility, sustainability, capital flows, migration, and sustainable growth. This session will explore the tools and strategies that can be tapped on to support the transformation around these areas and help foster growth in Africa- looking closely into how and where Blockchain and DLT solutions can be applied to aid sustainable development and growth for a vibrant continent.

Chair of the International Committee/Senior Regional Advisor (Africa) at the British Blockchain Association (BBA) and Executive Education Lead at University of Surrey Business School, UK
Björn Peterson  
The Tokenisation of Prepaid Products on a Distributed Ledger Network
14:00pm

Despite all the hype in recent years, has a key application of blockchain technology for e-commerce and retailers been overlooked? Prepaid goods such as vouchers have long been a way of driving business to a brand and creating an opportunity for retailers, traders and distributors to reach a broad customer base. Could simply integrating into a global value transfer standard allow businesses to benefit from a liquid marketplace to sell any vouchers in markets around the world? This topic discusses the feasibility of a tokenised approach to traditional business models of vending prepaid goods and introduces a blockchain geared to tokenise any asset.

Solutions Engineer at Rehive
Tea/Coffee Break
14:15pm
Anrich Daseman  
Regulatory Advancements on Crypto Assets
14:30pm

For regulators and policymakers, the main concerns arise not from the technology itself, but how it affects the delivery of financial services along with the accelerated speed of development. Regulators play a key role in creating an enabling environment for these innovations to excel in a responsible manner. Regulatory authorities can no longer wait for the innovations to mature in order to develop appropriate frameworks to assess their implications. They now have to learn and adapt as innovations progress.

Senior Fintech Specialist at the South African Reserve Bank (SARB)
Jean Paul Fabri  
The Malta Perspective: Regulation of ICOs and Cryptocurrencies by the Maltese Government
15:00pm

Malta is one of the first jurisdictions to pass clear and detailed requirements around ICOs and cryptocurrencies, and has attracted a lot of attention as a crypto-friendly jurisdiction. On the one hand, clarity in regulation provides a level of protection and assurance for founders and investors. Just knowing what is and isn’t acceptable allows companies a level of certainty when establishing themselves. As of November, the 'Virtual Financial Assets Act, 2018' gives issuers of 'virtual financial assets' the assurance of having a guideline to follow.

Managing Director at ARQ
PROF. Angela Itzikowitz  
Tokens, the UK and the US position
15:30pm
Director at ENSafrica’s Banking and Finance Department
Eugéne Etsebeth  
From Blockchain Regulation to Self-regulation
15:50pm

This talk will explore the relationship between a central bank and self-regulated blockchain organisations, self-regulation for a cryptocurrency organisation, why central banks will struggle with blockchain and cryptocurrency regulation, and finally provide insights and recommendations.

Chief Operating Officer at iCE3X
Loretta Joseph  Anrich Daseman  Jean Paul Fabri  Charlene Chen  PROF. Angela Itzikowitz  Ashlin Perumall  
Panel: Finding the Balance Between Regulation and Innovation
16:10pm

What is the balance between regulation and innovation? How much regulation is necessary before it prevents innovation, especially in emerging countries? Why have regulators struggled to respond to developments with blockchain technology and cryptocurrencies? What are the recommendations for a successful regulatory framework for DLT, blockchain and crypto assets to succeed? A comparison of various jurisdictions (such as Malta, the US, China, Nigeria, Kenya, Zimbabwe, Mauritius and South Africa) and the results of over-regulation, self-regulation and a lack of regulation. Moderator: Farzam Ehsani

Fintech and Regulatory Consultant to Financial Services Commission Mauritius, Blockchain Advisor at OECD, Fintech Advisor in Bermuda
Senior Fintech Specialist at the South African Reserve Bank (SARB)
Managing Director at ARQ
Co-Founder and Chief Operating Officer at BitPesa
Director at ENSafrica’s Banking and Finance Department
Senior Associate at Baker McKenzie
Farzam Ehsani (Master of Ceremonies)  
Closing Address
16:50pm

The Master of Ceremonies will close off the conference with a few final thoughts.

CEO and Co-Founder of VALR.com

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Johannesburg Venue