Mainstream media has caught on to the ways in which blockchain might revolutionize business processes. This extends to the way in which local municipalities manage land titles.
One startup looking to solve the problem, UBITQUITY, recently joined the University of British Columbia blockchain research collaboration for blockchain and property recording.
“Our team had the pleasure of meeting Victoria Lemieux (Associate Professor, Archival Science, iSchool, University of British Columbia – formerly with The World Bank) at a World Bank event last March, and since then we’ve been working with her and her team of researchers (Hasan Cavosoglu, Luciana Duranti, Ning Nan, Carson Woo – Academic Partners),” founder Nathan Wosnack said. UBITQUITY also recently brought Priority Title & Escrow’s Joe Lamontagne on as advisor.
The startup offers a means of transferring deeds with a SaaS (Software-as-a-Service) blockchain platform. UBITQUITY wishes for real estate, title, and mortgage companies benefit from a clean record of ownership, reducing future title search time, increased confidence, and transparency.
A newly reshuffled core team, comprised of Marina Reznik a director, Nathan Wosnack as the new Founder & President (from CEO), recently recorded a Real Property Transfer onto the blockchain in late June 2016.
“We have a working system of record and are partnering with relevant actors in the private sector such as Title Companies, and new construction developers, since you have to start somewhere and as you probably know innovation always starts with the private sector,” Wosnack told CCN, “with governments following suit. Ultimately, we aim to broaden our horizons and partner with municipalities and County Recorders to record all public documents associated with each property in their jurisdiction and work to integrate with e-recording companies.” Mr. Wosnack believes Bitcoin has had a significant head start over other blockchains.
“While we know there will be excellent, reliable and creative innovations in the future that provide custom, secure, distributed solutions, the Bitcoin blockchain fits the functionality we need for our platform and is currently, in our opinion, the best and only logical choice all while staying ‘Blockchain agnostic.’” UBITQUITY had investigated Ethereum, and may still in the future.
“We felt it was too early to pursue it,” Mr Wosnack said. “The distributed, peer to peer nature of Bitcoin, and the support we’ve received from Colu for their API over the Colored Coins protocol has been great. We’re looking into smart contract integration, possibly with Rootstock (RSK).”
RSK is the first open-source smart contract platform with a 2-way peg to Bitcoin that also rewards the Bitcoin miners via merge-mining, allowing them to actively participate in the Smart Contract revolution. RSK goal is to add value and functionality to the Bitcoin ecosystem by enabling smart-contracts, near instant payments and higher-scalability.”
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