Roberto Mancone, who left his position as COO of in April, has founded WhatIf, a new consultancy that will advise companies on blockchain, artificial intelligence and the internet of things.

Mancone has spent the past three years spearheading, one of the most prominent blockchain initiatives in the trade finance industry, backed by a consortium of 12 banks.

He first became involved in the project as global head of disruptive technologies and solutions at Deutsche Bank (one of the project’s initiators), and since April 2018 served as COO of Innovation DAC, an independent legal entity created by the consortium to run the project.

In this capacity, Mancone helped bring the platform, a blockchain-based solution helping SMEs in Europe to manage, track and protect open account trade transactions, into production and ensured the platform had its first licence agreements in place.

“Over the past two years I have seen the technology evolve a lot,” Mancone said, speaking to GTR at the time of his departure. “It has matured to a level where there are opportunities to create new operating models, new business models which can really change the way business has been done.”

This is exactly what WhatIf, with Mancone as the company’s CEO, will be doing: helping companies to develop new business and operating models based on exponential technologies. It advises on execution, operation, strategy and business development, as well as areas such as design, IT architecture and API infrastructure.

The Dublin-based company will also host learning workshops on blockchain, artificial intelligence and the internet of things for managers and executives across Europe, the US and Asia.

Mancone tells GTR that WhatIf is currently supporting an Italian bank looking to develop innovative invoice financing solutions for SMEs, as well as a supply chain-focused fintech company developing trade finance solutions.