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AntChain’s Blockchain as a Service: Digitising Industry Collaboration

By S. Alex Yang, Nitish Jain


The case describes how AntChain’s parent, Ant Group, started to invest in blockchain in 2015 as it believed the technology would build trust between different actors in a system. The earliest use case was a cross-border remittance service. The team continued to build and develop its blockchain technology, launching a new generation of blockchain-enabled high-speed communication networks and reducing bandwidth costs by 80%. The team went on to win many Chinese and international awards and partnered with training centres and universities to develop the technology. The team was able to monetise its blockchain through BaaS with different strategies, such as service fees and subscription models, depending on what the client needed.

The case shows how, through AntChain’s technology, HelloBike was able to overcome the issues of bad reputation and fraud that characterised the bike-sharing industry in China to become a trusted and dominant force in several cities across the country. Coupling AntChain with IoT gave HelloBike data credibility and built trust, which attracted investors who otherwise shied away from the industry. The case then describes various potential use cases, including Trusple (distributed trade networks), Quezao (digital intellectual property) and Carbon Matrix (management of companies’ carbon goals). The case concludes by asking what other use cases AntChain could target. These included industrial equipment, renewable-energy generation and storage, the scalability of digital IP and global trade, and other use cases that AntChain had yet to consider.

Learning objectives

  1. Understand the basics of blockchain and its value proposition.
  2. Understand how Blockchain technology can create value when used in conjunction with other digital technologies (such as Internet of Things).
  3. Critically evaluate the applicability of blockchain technology to existing business use cases.
  4. Identify further innovative use cases for blockchain- as-a- service (BaaS) and IoT


Publication Date: November 2023
LBS Case Code: CS-23-011
Subjects: , , , , , , , , ,
Geography: ,
Pages: 12
Format: pdf