Troy Norcross Q&A: The Future Of Enterprise Blockchain

troyWelcome to Mob76 Outlook, Troy.

We’ve heard a lot about your work in blockchain at Volvo. Can you tell us more?

Troy: In March this year, the Volvo Group took a significant step towards transforming its transport and logistics by launching a new network, Logivity, based on blockchain.

My role as the enterprise architect  encompassed the design of the blockchain network, the underlying data model and the development of our first service, Logify Connect.

Although the project was challenging, it was equally rewarding, presenting a steep learning curve for the entire team. My responsibilities included everything from value proposition development for the ecosystem to ensuring GDPR compliance and privacy by design, drafting terms and conditions for the service, supporting business regulatory alignment, and integrating blockchain data into an enterprise-grade ERP system. This project was an amalgamation of technology, law, and business – a real-world application of blockchain at its best.

Blockchain technology is known to enhance the resilience and transparency of
supply chains. How has Volvo taken advantage of these benefits?

Troy: The fragility of supply chains became apparent during the pandemic, increasing pressure on the transport and logistics industry to improve transparency, efficiency, and resilience. However, there are complexities involved. While blockchain technology
inherently promotes transparency, there’s a threshold beyond which transparency can threaten a company’s competitive advantage and create risk.

This means that while designing industry networks, it is essential to strike a balance between transparency and competition. This can be achieved by giving network members significant control over their information, including the ability to dictate whom they share it with. This intricate balance is key to delivering the benefits of blockchain while preserving a competitive edge.

Can you elaborate on your previous engagements with enterprise blockchain projects?

Troy: Over the last five years, I’ve been privileged to lend my expertise to more than ten distinctive enterprise blockchain ventures. Notably, one of my most challenging projects in 2017 involved tokenising REIT (Real-Estate Investment Trust) certificates. This ambitious endeavour sought to confront the liquidity issues often encountered in the real estate sector, using blockchain to tokenise tangible assets and consequently open up direct avenues for consumers to invest in property markets.

Another ground-breaking project involved amalgamating identity, healthcare data, and
entitlements within a public healthcare ecosystem. This intricate blockchain application
called for a nuanced understanding of data immutability and discerning what information
could be stored on-chain, given the rigorous data privacy regulations in the EU and

As I observe enterprise blockchain trends, I perceive identity as an integral element gaining traction. This is a space that I’ve been eagerly exploring in recent years, and foresee it playing a critical role in the evolution of enterprise blockchain.

Could you share how you became interested in blockchain technology?

Troy: My journey with blockchain started in May 2017 when I attended MoneyConf as a business strategy consultant. I met a start-up founder and his investor with a novel
blockchain business concept at the conference. Within two months, I found myself as the CEO of a blockchain company, preparing for an ICO and presenting to family offices in Monaco.

By the end of 2017, as regulators in the UK started scrutinising ICOs more closely, we
terminated the ICO, deciding that ‘I don’t look good in Orange’; That six-month period was a crash course in blockchain. I got to grips with the technology and the business models,pros and cons and an understanding of the deep-rooted egalitarian philosophy of Bitcoin believers.

I took away an awareness that there are no experts in this space. We are still
learning; we are all still ‘rookies’. And with my newfound knowledge, I started offering
corporate strategy advice and training under Blockchain Rookies banner as well as being a blockchain columnist for London publication CityAM.

Many people need clarification on blockchain with cryptocurrency. Could you clarify the difference for our readers?

Troy: Yes, the difference between blockchain and cryptocurrency still needs to be clarified for many. The easiest way to distinguish them is to compare blockchain and crypto to the Internet and email.

All email runs on the Internet, but the Internet supports so much more than just email.
Similarly, all cryptocurrencies operate on blockchain, but blockchain has wider applications beyond cryptocurrencies.

Blockchain technology is the infrastructure that allows cryptocurrency (and other services, like transport and logistics and supply chain) to operate in a multi-stakeholder environment, without a centralised intermediary like a bank or a broker.

Over the past five years, my work has been helping enterprises understand how to use
blockchain to create incremental business value. This involves explaining how blockchain
fosters trust among multiple distrusting parties and helps reduce reconciliation and dispute resolution costs. I also dedicate much of my time to demystifying (and usually debunking!) concepts around crypto tokenomics and their price-value dynamics.

Beyond educating about crypto, I also work to explain that non-fungible tokens (NFTs) are not just digital art (and technically they aren’t even digital art!) – that Web3 is primarily a Utopian vision of a new world that will struggle with getting funding – and how DeFi (decentralised finance) is often not very decentralised at all because if DeFi was truly decentralised it wouldn’t be profitable and the user experience would be terrible.

Your personal journey seems fascinating. You’re an American residing in Lisbon with a home in London. How did this journey unfold?

Troy: I was born and raised in Missouri on a 4,000-acre farm with 1,000 head of beef cattle. But I was allergic to everything around me. At 12, I found a different path through computers, which promised an environment free from allergens.

Over the years, my career has taken many turns. I’ve developed flight simulators for military aircraft, sold computer systems for image processing and 3D graphics, worked in data centres and telecoms infrastructure, and even had a stint at Nokia making devices.

I’ve founded a start-up, guided start-ups on value propositions, business models, and market strategies, and engaged in innovation projects across industries such as big pharma and digital music. I’ve lived in various European cities, including Amsterdam, Zurich, Helsinki, and Munich, and spent more than15 years in London. I’ve been residing just South of Lisbon in Portugal, since the end of 2020. It’s a long way from my Missouri farm.

What are your plans for the rest of 2023 and 2024, specifically in terms of aiding other companies in understanding enterprise logistics?

Troy:  My recent experiences with Serai, an HSBC subsidiary in Hong Kong, and the Logivity project at Volvo Group have led me to develop a keen interest in supply chain sustainability.

The transport and logistics industry, largely unchanged in the last 60 years, holds immense opportunities for digital transformation. I’m particularly excited about bringing innovative ideas from concept to reality. Navigating the complexities of legal, regulatory, and compliance issues, confronting corporate culture and politics, and challenging corporate norms offer a thrilling experience.

If there’s resistance, it signifies that what we’re working on is truly transformative. I’m passionate about engaging in projects that can transform an entire industry, not just a single enterprise. My primary focus areas for the coming years include supply chain, transport, logistics, sustainability, identity, and digital transformation.

As we wrap up, could you share your thoughts on the future trajectory of enterprise blockchain? 

Troy: Enterprise blockchain often becomes collateral damage in the wild swings of public sentiment towards the cryptocurrency world, and more recently, phenomena like Web3 and the metaverse. These perceptions are not particularly useful, nor are they the primary hurdles. Jason Kelley from IBM Blockchain once wisely noted that ‘enterprise blockchain is a team sport’. This rings true, as blockchain networks fundamentally serve as infrastructure.

They lay the groundwork for secure collaboration among network participants and facilitate data and value exchanges fluidly. However, willingness to participate can be an issue.

Blockchain fosters coopetition – a novel synergy of collaboration and competition. It
brings efficiency via data transparency and control but doesn’t necessarily promote one participant’s market share over another. It does not endorse the aggressive notion of annihilating competition.

The future of enterprise blockchain, I believe, lies in embracing a perspective that Volvo
Group’s Martin Lundstedt championed at COP26: ‘partnership is the new Leadership’.

When enterprises recognize the value of collaboration towards common objectives—like
sustainability—enterprise blockchain will advance to its next phase. This shift in mindset will ultimately drive the future of blockchain in business settings.

Thanks, Troy, we appreciate your strong blockchain insights, thanks for sharing

My pleasure, thanks for having me.

Q&A: 7BC Venture Capital Founders

Andrew Romans and Hazem Danny Al Nakib are the co-founders of 7BC, a venture capital fund using he power of capital, network and technology to back teams disrupting industries and solving global problems toward a more connected, digitized and automated global economy.


7BC Co-Founder Hazem Danny Al Nakib is based in London.

Welcome to Mob76 Outlook, please tell our readers about 7BC

We were founded for a number of reasons. The first is that although digital transformation and the sharing economy has taken the world by storm over the past 20 years, it has been incredible at sharing, transferring and transmitting data and information, but not at transmitting and transferring value.

The second reason is that without targeted capital investments into innovations at a protocol level, standard, and infrastructure level that really aims at connecting systems, their resiliency, privacy, security, and capabilities and focusing far too much on applications, the entire objective of the model of what economies and industries will look like is ultimately lost.

The third is that we wanted to take a holistic approach across a broad and yet still focused mandate at a technological layer across AI, FinTech and software infrastructure – particularly within the financial sector where it has welcomed, in parts digital transformation, but is nascent when it comes to actual digitalisation where value itself has become digital.

Across all of this, it becomes clear that we are thinking about what global and local economies will turn into and our focus is on what underpins those futures that prioritise security, resilience and optimise efficiencies. We are interested in broader waves effective the use of data, implementations of digital identity, the creation of new asset classes, and the future models of connectivity.


7BC Co-Founder Andrew Romans is based in Silicon Valley.

Why is the fund called 7BC Venture Capital?

Our name 7BC Venture Capital signals our ability to assist and support our portfolio companies on all 7 continents of the world and experience a journey together with our network where after receiving our capital support they will travel the 7 seas and develop their business with our support on a global basis through expansion and growth.

The number seven suggests our international LP base and other business support networks and is also a lucky number which is important at early stage investing and entrepreneurship. BC stands for borderless continents and borderless capital while spanning many different technologies. We believe that AI, FinTech and software infrastructure will collectively usher in a new era for humankind. Our mission is to fund, develop and support the startups that create the foundation of this new era. The right teams, the right technology, the right capital, and the right business model.

Why are you focusing on AI, software infrastructure and FinTech?

There are disparate alternatives of what the future can look like. However, from a trend standpoint, we know that barriers to entry into the financial sector continue to lower as technology innovations come to the market. As such, the financial sector is becoming more integrated with other sectors and industries within the sharing economy, particularly around healthcare, travel, identity, hospitality and much more.

The second is that we view software infrastructure, and other forms of possibly decentralised technologies as the digital underpinning for applications that are built and that use other technologies such as AI, IoT and others to deliver products, services, and value.

There have been barriers to the successful deployment of many of these technologies and often it comes down to where the data is, how is it being collected, and is it being used well in a connected and secure environment, particularly when it is now more valuable than gold. And secondly, whether the digital representations of physical objects are easily stored, transferred, and transacted in a more transparent, disintermediated, and automatic way.

We find that changing the narrative and focusing on building blocks positions us well from a narrative standpoint to build a robust, disruptive and transformational portfolio of companies with both a unique advantage and a unique selling point and differentiator – Where our portfolio companies work together and are complimentary with each other as well. The future is one that will be even more connected, even more automated, and even more digital, that is all we can be certain of.

At what stage of startup investment do you invest?

The majority of our fund is dedicated to series A and growth stage rounds of early stage businesses at the post-product and post-revenue stage where rapid revenue growth, traction, and expansion are the key performance indicators of the business.

However, we do leave some room for a large number of small ticket capital investments at the seed or pre-series A rounds enabling us to double down in future rounds. Our global network of venture partners and ties to universities, incubators and local ambassadors allow us to support the rights teams early on.

Why is 7BC different to the other funds out there?

Every fund can say why they’re different. Most will say it’s their past performance and current network. We can ‘say’ that, but we can also ‘show’ you. We will continue to show you our network and continue to develop it.

In many cases the network is at our 7BC LP investor, team, VC co-investment / syndication and service provider layers, but our favourite is our own current and former portfolio CEOs and founders supporting our evolving global community, and that brings past performance to current and future financial performance. 

Any advice to startups when the pitch to you?

Really it always comes down to the basics. If the four biggest factors for success in real estate are location, location, location, the biggest factors for success in our lenses are team, team, team, market, technology, traction and who else is supporting this startup? 

Innovations come from having a new technology, at the right time, in the right place with a the right business model. That is what we’re looking for. Where is value not being captured, and where can value be better captured and best delivered?

But with all things, it is a story and depends on the facts of the case at hand – keep it simple, tell your story, have your reason and purpose that drives you and your team, and implement it then demonstrate in your pitch how you’ve been implementing it and what you plan on doing. 

Stick to facts and what is there specifically, what you have accomplished and what you will. As long as that can be shown tangibly and clearly, then you’ll attract the right capital, partners, and team members. Sometimes it is a numbers game, sometimes it’s a bit of your gut and vision, but above all it’s a mixture of demonstrating delivery, having laser sharp focus, being consistent, and being surrounded by the best team in an area of the market that you’ve identified is missing or lacking something. 

We know that our cash cheque is important, but if we can’t see how we can add value in other ways we don’t invest. This often comes down to our experience, advice and network. We believe that is how all early stage investing should be. Good startups will always attract plenty of funders in any boom or bust economy. The best funders need to demonstrate how they will add value and then deliver that value whilst constantly growing their reputation. It’s that simple. Add value or don’t invest. 

BlockSpeak 1 – Monty Munford, Co-Founder BlockSpeak

Welcome to the first episode of our video podcast BlockSpeak.BlockSpeak

BlockSpeak is a new blockchain and crypto video podcast that interviews the world’s biggest names from marketeers to FinTech to blockchain to Bitcoin Billionaires.

As the pandemic rages and the world moves on its axis very day, it’s vital that we keep talking, even if it’s over a Zoom link rather than face-to-face.

In this episode regular host Monty Munford is himself interviewed by BlockSpeak Co-Founder Jean-Michel Azzopardi to find out what the reasoning is behind the podcast and why it is important that in crazy days an intelligent conversation is vital for our sociability and sanity.

Munford reflects on his career as a tech journalist for the past decade and speaking at more than 200 global events as an emcee, moderator, panelist and keynote speaker at prestigious events around the world, focusing on technology change, good and bad, current or emerging.

He has interviewed on stage leading icons such as Kim Kardashian, Steve Wozniak (twice), Gary Vaynerchuk, John McAfee, Brock Pierce, Brian Solis and many others in cities as diverse as Beirut, Moscow, Vienna, Nairobi, Johannesburg and Hanoi.

He was previously a weekly tech columnist for Forbes in New York, the Telegraph in the UK and continues to write regularly for the BBC and The Economist.

He is also the founder of tech consultancy Mob76 that helps leading companies raise their profile and he publishes a Google News-verified blog, Mob76 Outlook, which you’re reading now.

BlockSpeak has the initials of BS, but this podcast is the opposite of the ‘other’ BS. Guests are encouraged to come out of their comfort zone and engage with Munford and a discerning audience.

Nobody knows what this pandemic has in store, but BlockSpeak will keep people in touch with the world and ensuring that the conversation goes on.

November Summit invites AI startup trailblazers

Best startups in AI sector to battle it out at summit for business rewards


Leading startups from the artificial intelligence industry will compete for a business boost at the winter edition of Malta AI & Blockchain Summit this November.

The Summit will take place from 7th to 8th November 2019, marking the second event this year for the successful expo. Tickets can be booked here and are expected to sell out.

With strong support from the Maltese government, the event has established itself as one of the world’s leading destinations for the growing sectors of AI, Blockchain and DLT, IoT, and other vertical industries.

AI start-ups will be vying for a place amongst the top ten successful start-ups to be selected to participate in the AI Start-up Pitch, where they’ll take part in a live showdown in front of a panel of the most prominent experts from the AI industry and investors. Taking place on the main stage at peak time during day one of the event, the AI Pitch is always a favourite with the AIBC audience.

With a prize package including a year’s office space, media relations support, digital marketing, and more, one lucky start-up will get a massive head start with their business plans – the stakes could not be higher as the Malta AIBC Summit continues to inspire and nurture the incredible talent appearing on this emerging tech scene.

Of course, all participants are set to be winners, as with such luminary figures from the sector judging the contest, taking part all but guarantees invaluable insights from critical feedback and praise of unique applications for artificial intelligence. And with investors aplenty in attendance, it should be no surprise that many start-ups will come away from the summit with a bright future looming!

100 deep tech start-ups from the sectors of AI, Blockchain, IoT, and Big Data will also showcase their projects and services with a 1×1 stand in the start-up village, benefiting both from 1000s of attendees at the show, as well as online visibility at

Eman Pulis, founder and CEO of the Malta AI & Blockchain Summit, said.

In this, our third and biggest show yet, we can’t wait to see the range and quality of entrants for the AI Start-Up Pitch. If our previous battles are anything to go by, we will be sowing the seeds of growth for some of the future global brands in the AI space.


I couldn’t be prouder that our show is instrumental in bringing together such amazing talent in one venue and I look forward to meeting all those taking part.”

The bi-annual event includes conferences hosted by globally renowned speakers, workshops for industry learning and discussion, an exhibit space accommodating more than 400 brands and much more.

The first Malta Blockchain Summit in November 2018 attracted 8,500 attendees from more than 80 countries, with 300 sponsors and exhibitors, 200 speakers, and 1 AI VIP (Sophia the world’s first robot citizen).

Akon brings his Afro-futuristic city to Malta

Grammy-winning artist is bringing his Akoin vision for Africa to November summit


Akon, hip-hop superstar and one of  Africa’s most renowned philanthropists, has accepted a speaker slot at the crypto and blockchain focussed show in November.

He will be speaking about his Akoin token and how he hopes the blockchain-based cryptocurrency can empower young entrepreneurs in Africa to strengthen the continent’s rising economies and support the development of sustainable communities.

Akon’s vision for Africa is already in position, with first steps taken in Senegal’s capital city Dakar, where Senegalese President Macky Sall has gifted him 2,000 acres to establish an Afro-futuristic city.

The whole idea with the city is to create a renewable city. Crypto is the money spent in the city; all digital. All renewable energy; no gas, no nothing. We’ll create platforms of all of today’s newest technologies embedded within the city itself.”

Through the artist’s Akoin Foundation, inspired entrepreneurs will develop future-forward businesses and promote innovation, economic stability, and growth across Africa, as well as in the wider world.

Through the Akoin ecosystem of crypto-based DApps and Apps, rising entrepreneurs can learn, earn, spend and save, as well as have more transparency and security within these daily economic building activities, including civil engagement.

“I think banking systems can definitely benefit from blockchain, but the voting system will probably be the number one system for the technology,” he says. “The good thing about blockchain is it leaves a footprint,” explains Akon. “You can’t do anything without it being open for everyone to see it – it opens the road to transparency.”

Eman Pulis, founder and CEO of Malta A.I. & Blockchain Summit, commented.

With a vision so clearly in line with the best hopes for the blockchain world, Akon is sure to be a huge draw for the conference audience at November’s Malta AIBC.  We’re excited to work with him in using blockchain to make the world a better place for everyone.”

The Malta A.I. & Blockchain Summit takes place November 4-8th, 2019.