Deloitte has joined forces with blockchain specialist Practical Smarts as part of plans to enhance distributed ledger technology (DLT) advisory offerings in Southeast Asia.
Terms of the agreement will see the Singapore-based start-up join Deloitte’s Risk Advisory practice with co-founders Stanley Yong and Andrew Koay co-leading the Deloitte Blockchain Lab in Southeast Asia.
The Lab will work with customers planning to implement and deploy DLT and blockchain solutions, with a specific focus on governance, regulatory, settlement and enforceability. The Lab will also hire and train fintech experts with a focus on digital and cyber security skills.
“Blockchain is enabling numerous cross-industry and cross-border ecosystems across the world, and Deloitte has been leading the market with three regional labs and 1500 practitioners globally,” said Dr Paul Sin, leader of Blockchain Lab, Deloitte Asia Pacific. “The establishment of the Southeast Asia Blockchain practice is our response to the ever-increasing demand from our clients.
“With the acquisition of the top talents from the market this time, and the full support from Deloitte's global network, we look forward to seeing huge success in both market eminence and business growth very soon.”
Established in 2017, Practical Smarts specialises in the provision of advisory services on business, technical and regulatory matters related to the usage of asset-backed digital tokens within the financial services industry.
“Blockchain is gaining momentum in the region and acceptance is growing across multiple industries,” Yong added. “The benefits and limitations of blockchain have been revealed through proof of concepts, and the focus is now on production and implementation where risk management becomes a critical concern.
“With this transaction, together, we can generate more value to our clients, and we can leverage our shared knowledge and expertise to create sustainable and widely adopted business solutions aligned to enterprise needs in today’s fast-evolving marketplace.”
Collectively, Deloitte and Practical Smarts will offer customers a dedicated DLT and blockchain service for businesses in Southeast Asia as part of the Deloitte Asia Pacific Blockchain Lab.
“As clients embark on their digital transformation journey, it is important for them to have the support and expertise wherever they need it,” Koay said.
“The combined strengths of Deloitte and Practical Smarts, operating in the ASEAN region where there is a burgeoning of technology entrepreneurs and start-ups, will put us at the forefront to meet the demand as our clients seek to use one professional services firm to deliver market-leading strategic advice and industry-leading solutions for their business needs.”
According to Philip Yuen, CEO of Deloitte Southeast Asia, Practical Smarts will complement the consultancy firm’s cyber and digital assurance services by securing the assets to be transferred over the network and the underlying transfer protocol.
“Digital technology is transforming the financial markets in the Southeast Asia region and blockchain is a key component of this transformation,” he added.