New York City may begin testing blockchain technology for various use cases later this year.
The New York City Economic Development Corporation’s (EDC) new Blockchain Center opened Thursday, and intends to begin testing the tech’s use cases next fall, Bloomberg reported Thursday. The center is part of a partnership with the venture capital fund FuturePerfect Ventures and the Global Blockchain Business Council trade organization.
It is unclear at this time which areas these use cases may cover. The EDC is a non-profit corporation which aims to support economic growth within the city. It acts as New York’s official economic development corporation.
New York City itself has contributed $100,000 to the new Blockchain Center, and the facility will continue to raise funds through corporate partnerships and membership dues.
Microsoft Corporation and IBM have already partnered with the center, FuturePerfect Ventures managing partner Jalak Jobanputra told Bloomberg.
The new center, based in the Flatiron District, will offer classes on coding and host lectures aimed at both developers in the space and the general public.
The move comes as a number of crypto startups began laying off employees due to an ongoing bear market, but this is not necessarily a concern for the center.
Ana Arino, chief strategy officer with the EDC, told Bloomberg that the center was “playing the long game,” adding:
“It’s a nascent technology, so there’s bound to be uncertainty around this evolution from year to year. While we don’t know what the future holds, we want to make sure we have a seat at the table shaping it.”
A number of companies are beginning to set up shop within New York, including Coinbase, which opened a new office in the city last fall. Canaan, a maker of bitcoin mining hardware, is also reportedly considering launching an initial public offering in the city.
The EDC did not respond to a request for comment by press time.
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