The retail industry continues to be a hotbed of innovation. Activity is driven by security and technology, and the growing importance of technologies such as blockchain, smart contracts, and cloud. In the last three years alone, there have been over 133,000 patents filed and granted in the retail industry, according to GlobalData’s report on Cybersecurity in Retail: Transaction data blockchain. Buy the report here.

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According to GlobalData’s Technology Foresights, which uses over 128,000 patents to analyse innovation intensity for the retail industry, there are 70+ innovation areas that will shape the future of the industry.

Transaction data blockchain is a key innovation area in cybersecurity

Blockchain provides enhanced security by offering strong encryption, reducing vulnerabilities, and effectively verifying the ownership of data. Its distributed ledger is its key advantage. In a blockchain, transaction data is stored across every network node, limiting the chances for data to be compromised, stolen or tampered with.

GlobalData’s analysis also uncovers the companies at the forefront of each innovation area and assesses the potential reach and impact of their patenting activity across different applications and geographies. According to GlobalData, there are 10+ companies, spanning technology vendors, established retail companies, and up-and-coming start-ups engaged in the development and application of transaction data blockchain.

Key players in transaction data blockchain – a disruptive innovation in the retail industry

‘Application diversity’ measures the number of different applications identified for each relevant patent. It broadly splits companies into either ‘niche’ or ‘diversified’ innovators.

‘Geographic reach’ refers to the number of different countries each relevant patent is registered in. It reflects the breadth of geographic application intended, ranging from ‘global’ to ‘local’.

Patent volumes related to transaction data blockchain

Company Total patents (2010 - 2022) Premium intelligence on the world's largest companies
SoftBank Group 331 Unlock Company Profile
nChain Holdings 52 Unlock Company Profile 15 Unlock Company Profile
Rokfin 12 Unlock Company Profile
eBay 11 Unlock Company Profile
Security Matters 8 Unlock Company Profile
Intensity Analytics 8 Unlock Company Profile
Walmart 6 Unlock Company Profile
Ali Group 6 Unlock Company Profile
CEA 5 Unlock Company Profile
International Business Machines 5 Unlock Company Profile

Source: GlobalData Patent Analytics

Leading players in the transaction data blockchain for cybersecurity space in terms of patents filed are SoftBank Group, nChain,, Rokfin, and eBay. In January 2023, nChain announced its partnership with W2, a company that provides regulatory compliance services to the gambling industry, and Crucial Compliance, which specialises in player protection, to provide blockchain-powered compliance solutions. The partnership aims to help operators to deal with the current regulatory challenges and making their compliance processes and tools future ready.

Leading players in the transaction data blockchain for cybersecurity space in terms of application diversity are Ali Group, Security Matters, eBay, and Walmart.

Leading players in the space in terms of geographic reach are nChain, Security Matters,, and SoftBank Group.

With the help of digital signatures and encryption, a blockchain system can protect devices such as smart doorbells, connected thermostats, and security cameras.

To further understand the key themes and technologies disrupting the retail industry, access GlobalData’s latest thematic research report on Cybersecurity in Retail.

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GlobalData, the leading provider of industry intelligence, provided the underlying data, research, and analysis used to produce this article.

GlobalData’s Patent Analytics tracks patent filings and grants from official offices around the world. Textual analysis and official patent classifications are used to group patents into key thematic areas and link them to specific companies across the world’s largest industries.