The U.S. state of Oregon may evoke images of lush green forests and rustic farm life, but it could soon be equated more with the revolutionary technology that is blockchain.
According to the Portland Business Journal, the Oregon Blockchain Venture Studio could be just the thing that puts the state on the virtual map. The incubator program will be organized and hosted by a string of well-known names including Intel, Nike, and New York-based advertising company, R/GA.
Local businesses are also involved. These include the Oregon Health and Science University and Portland State University. In addition, Smith + Crown, as a leading blockchain research organization, is on hand to provide their skills and expertise in the technology.
The founder of the Blockchain Venture Studio, Jeff Gaus, spoke about one of the goals of the initiative, saying:
What Pittsburgh is to steel or Detroit is to autos or Seattle to manned flight, why can’t Oregon be that for blockchain. If you look at blockchain, it’s based on collaboration and consensus. The Oregon ethos exactly maps to what is required for blockchain to work.
As an incubator program, the venture will, among other things, financially assist chosen businesses in realizing their vision. This will be done with a minimum $100,000 investment with the selected businesses required to work at R/GA’s Pearl District office. Gaus explained:
Our intention is that we put our best case for them to reside here or open a location here. For them to stay here, the community has to come together, it has to be more than Blue Star (Donuts) and bicycles. We need the services, the investors, the real estate and most of those wheels are in motion.
Oregon Government Is Onboard
The program has also garnered financial support from the state’s government. Its economic development agency, Business Oregon, and the Oregon Growth Board have pledged $250,000 over the next two years.
The spokesperson for Business Oregon, Nathan Buehler, spoke about what the state has to offer, saying:
Part of our role as the state’s economic development agency is to look to the horizon and make investments now that can create competitive advantages for Oregon in the future. No region has established and laid claim to the technology. With the assets we currently have in Oregon around both hardware and software technology, we are ripe to establish an advantage in the industry.
While the creation of crypto regulations in the country may not be fast enough for some, the integration and interest of blockchain technology continue to grow. From universities to the Customs and Border Protection (CBP) unit, the U.S. seems to be fully embracing this aspect of the industry.
Do you think this state will be the next blockchain hotspot? Let us know in the comments below!
Images courtesy of Pixabay and Shutterstock.
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