A.T. Kearney and PwC back French blockchain incubator Chain Accelerator

06 July 2018 Consultancy.eu 3 min. read

Chain Accelerator, which bills itself as the biggest European accelerator dedicated to supporting startups in the blockchain realm, has opened its doors in Paris-based incubator Station F. The new accelerator programme supports promising blockchain concepts and teams by providing a dedicated network of experts and entrepreneurs.

The launch of Chain Accelerator comes at a time when blockchain is facing booming interest. Lending its technology from the well-known cryptocurrency Bitcoin, blockchain has grown into what is dubbed one of the largest disruptors of industries, in particular in areas which require transactions and communication or alignment between parties/nodes. Adoption of the technology in financial services is already well underway, with banks and insurance companies across the globe embracing the innovative technology as a means of optimising operations and security. Meanwhile, blockchain is also rapidly entering the stage across industries, from logistics and transport to aviation and government.

In France, the promise of blockchain has even come to the attention of the Macron government. In March, finance minister Bruno Le Maire warned that France “should not miss out on the blockchain revolution”, sparking an increasing friendliness towards cryptocurrency innovation. Soon after, a special parliamentary workstream was set up to investigate how to deal with the potential of virtual currencies, while in the private sector, investments in cryptocurrency-related startups and platforms boomed last year. Paymium, a French bitcoin buying and exchange platform for instance recently successfully closed a €60 million fundraising event for Initial Coin Offerings (ICO). 

“At a time when the President of the Republic and the Government want to turn Paris into a leading blockchain ecosystem, Chain Accelerator is positioned as a major node in the city. We bring together the best talents and a network of experts that can help blockchain disruptions in all sectors prepare for their next phase of growth,” said Nicolas Cantu, co-founder of Chain Accelerator.Blockchain incubator Chain Accelerator launches in Station FCantu is backed by the vision of Pierre Person, who on behalf of the French government is part of the parliament’s virtual currencies organ. “Blockchain will revolutionise our daily lives. Our country aims to become a leader in the field, and I am convinced that Chain Accelerator – the first blockchain dedicated incubator in France – will contribute greatly to this objective.” 

Chain Accelerator’s six month accelerator programme offers participating startups a wide range of services, including technical prototyping, business development, recruitment, marketing and public relations, fundraising support, support for ICO, and channels to tap into the token economy.

Startups are further supported by a periphery of leading blockchain experts that have committed their backing to Chain Accelerator. These include professional services firms A.T. Kearney and PwC, as well as Havas Blockchain, Sharpstone Advisory, Alto Avocats, Otsar, BlockTech, InnovHub, The Smart Model, and the French Cryptomanagement Association. 

Over twenty startups have so far been admitted into the programme. Each startup has agreed to pay €1,200 euros per month to Chain Accelerator, with the incubator mandated to take a further 5% of the capital or token (tokens) issued during an ICO. In return, alongside its support in facilities, infrastructure and expertise, Chain Accelerator says that it believes in can help its ‘clients’ raise €100 million in funding in the coming year alone.