PwC Digs Further into Blockchain, Acquires Minority Stake in VeChain

VeChain’s platform ‎has already been adopted by several established ‎companies.

PwC, an accounting powerhouse with over 220,000 employees and ‎a $36 ‎billion annual revenue, has made its first official ‎investment in the blockchain industry. The company’s arms in Hong ‎Kong and Singapore have each acquired a small ownership interest ‎in VeChain, a blockchain-based anti-counterfeit and supply chain startup out of ‎China.‎

The investment is thought to provide PwC with VeChain’s trust-based services through its platform, which will require the use of ‎VeChain Tokens to access and perform transactions. VeChain’s platform ‎has already been adopted by several established companies as part of their production ‎system across various‎ industries.‎

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VeChain is a subsidiary of Chinese blockchain technology ‎company BitSE, which was launched in November 2016 to ‎create, manage and update shared data about ‎products in the supply chain. PwC’s investment will help ‎VeChain accelerate its deployment in Hong Kong and ‎South East Asia, as well as offer the blockchain startup ‎strategic advice.‎

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PwC is one of the famed Big Four tax and accounting companies in the world, which also ‎includes Deloitte, EY, and KPMG. It was the second mega professional services company to ‎offer its clients the possibility of settling their invoices in Bitcoin.‎

PwC ‎isn’t the first Big Four firm to adopt Bitcoin payments as Ernst & Young (EY) already enabled ‎its clients last year to pay for products and services using the decentralized ‎cryptocurrency. Also, other professional services have been eyeing this trend for quite some ‎time as Bitcoin, and other established cryptocurrencies have now been more broadly accepted ‎as forms of settlement.‎

Meanwhile, the pro-crypto push may not only aim to lower transaction costs for its advisory ‎services but seems part of a wider strategy to promote the developments of digital products. ‎Specifically, PwC is taking it a step further by advising customers about crypto funds ‎and investments, cryptocurrency exchanges and fundraising through token sales, or ICOs. This ‎will include advisement on new processes, risks, regulatory policy, and tax guidelines.‎

Commenting on the news, Raymund Chao, PwC Asia Pacific, and Greater ‎China Chairman said: “We are glad to establish a deeper relationship with ‎VeChain, which aims to build a trusted and distributed business ecosystem to help ‎address long-standing challenges in supply chain management, food trust, and anti-counterfeiting areas. VeChain’s mission aligns with PwC’s purpose of solving ‎important problems and building trust in society.” ‎

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