Japanese multinational Fujitsu, one of the world's largest IT services companies, has launched a Brussels-based Blockchain Innovation Center.
The company announced the initiative on Wednesday, noting that its primary objective will be to facilitate research on blockchain technology and to develop projects in collaboration with private and public sector organizations.
"The center underscores Fujitsu's commitment to blockchain and other distributed ledger technologies as a means to revolutionize the way consumers and enterprises buy, sell and exchange goods and services and for organizations to transform their commercial and operational models," the firm said.
Yves de Beauregard, head of Fujitsu Benelux, cited increased customer interest in blockchain technology as the impetus for the creation of the center, and noted that Belgium's geographical location, among other factors, made it a desirable place in which to launch the initiative.
The company also revealed that the center would focus on projects relating to smart cities.
Frederik De Breuck, pre-sales and business assurance director at Fujitsu Benelux, explained that the proportion of the world population inhabiting urban areas is set to increase rapidly over the next thirty years, and that as such, it would be necessary to develop services that "combine ICT with infrastructure and architecture to address social, economic and environmental problems."
"The use of blockchain technology with its potential in public ledger and voting ID, and its capacity to automate processes and auditing in smart contracts, will doubtlessly play an important role in this changing ecosystem," De Breuck said.
As CoinDesk has previously reported, Fujitsu is far from a newcomer to the blockchain industry.
It is also a member of the Hyperledger consortium and has released several projects to be used with the group's blockchain platfrom, Hyperledger Fabric .
Earlier this month, the company unveiled technology that could address detect bugs within ethereum's smart contracts.
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