EY and Microsoft launched a new blockchain based content rights and royalties management system on Thursday. The two will be deploying the system to Microsoft and its game publisher partners first before expanding their reach to other industries.

The value chain will be available for any industry where intellectual property rights are to be maintained. It could include developers, production houses, songwriters, authors and more.

Trust and Transparency

The new blockchain based solution is designed for creating transparency and trust in intellectual property registration and royalties.

Billions of dollars are paid in royalties every month. However, royalty calculations are done manually and managed with the help of offline data sources.

The new blockchain based solution will reduce operational inefficiencies in the system and reduce the need for manual management of accounts. This will help in providing quicker and more robust partner reviews too.

Also, the solution provides real-time sales transaction tracking, which will help participants in tracking their proceeds more effectively and improve insights into the content sales.

Quorum Blockchain-Enabled Network

The Quorum blockchain protocol is used in the underlying distributed ledger system that runs on Microsoft Azure cloud infrastructure. The smart contract architecture used in this system is designed to maintain real-time calculation of royalties of each participant in the system, which will provide a better reconciliation of accounts.

Microsoft Software Engineering Manager Brad Wright stated:

“Powered by Microsoft Azure and blockchain technology, this solution helps demonstrate our ability to enhance trust with our gaming partners, and strengthen security, transparency and payment accuracy through the power of blockchain. We’re thrilled to work with EY and our gaming partners to streamline this business.”

Gaming partners of Microsoft will get improved visibility of all their transactions. This could help reduce the transaction times from 45 days to less than a day.

Accounting accruals will be generated daily, which will help in improving sales forecasting as well. The platform is currently being tested by Ubisoft, which is one of the biggest game publishers at Microsoft.

Loic Amans, senior vice president for finance & strategic planning at Ubisoft, said:

“We are always looking at how to leverage emerging technologies in all facets of our business. The opportunity to collaborate with EY and Microsoft on blockchain use cases in the domain of digital contracts and royalties is truly exciting.”

When fully functional, this blockchain is expected to handle millions of transactions each day for Microsoft game publishing partners alone.

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