Earlier this year, Datarella and Wirecard AG started a collaboration around a couple of blockchain projects. One of them was RAW coin, the trading of commodities made more efficient through the usage of blockchain.
We started by a thorough analysis of various commodity supply and trade chains, which led us to find the following challenges of supply chains:
- rising pressure from global competition
- many intermediaries and complex governance structures
- the end-consumer is demanding ever-higher levels of transparency
- struggle for supply chain stakeholders to maintain an adequate overview of their networks and the supply costs associated
- difficulty to ensure the quality and integrity of raw materials
We decided to narrow the PoC down to one specific use case, namely coffee beans. The reason for this is not simply that we're huge fans of (good) coffee, but actually, coffee is the second most sought after commodity after crude oil, globally. It has a trading volume of $100B per year and is grown in 50 countries (in some of which Wirecard offers financial services). Finally, the coffee supply chain has a large number of middle men and intermediaries adding marginal value but capturing a large amount of the end-price paid by consumers.
The basic idea of RAW.coin is to digitise trading mechanisms and replace middlemen. As a larger vision, we aim to establish the RAW.coin network to become the ecosystem for supply chains, ensuring the origin, quality, compliance and proper handling of items tracked by the network.
What the solution does is to connect the Producer and the Importer while providing a marketplace where any commodities can be traded. It's based on Ethereum, using smart contracts and a modern decentralised architecture. We implemented smart contracts to represent the terms and conditions of the network as well as enforcing them at the same time through automation. Additionally, we integrated with Wirecard to provide truly seamless B2B payments and fiat interactions. All transactions are done using the cryptocurrency RAW, but which can be immediately exchanged into fiat using the Wirecard Gateway API.
This is an actual screenshot of the current product:
We are currently inquiring into the best way to scale up and apply it to other commodities and in which markets. If you wish to learn more, tweet us at @datarella or contact us!