Skuchain, a blockchain-based supply chain app developer, recently partnered with the blockchain-for-IoT research lab, Chain of Things. I talked to Sanjay Saigal, Head of Customer Success at Skuchain, about new developments at the startup, its technology’s application for IoT, and the new partnership.
1. What is new at Skuchain?
We have over a dozen banks with whom we are having conversations with and have over 30 banks and enterprises in our pipeline. Besides proofs of concept, we are implementing customer pilots and soon will be running real transactions through our system.
Skuchain is attractive because our platform enable new products and create new lines of revenue. For every bank looking to improve and expand an existing letters of credit business, two want to implement deep tier financing or just in time (JIT) inventory financing. The seamless integration between our flow-of-goods solution with our flow-of-money solution makes for a compelling value proposition.
2. How is BlockIce developing?
Our Blockchain Initiative for Commerce Is our outreach platform to assist in standard-setting for commercial blockchain technology and all it entails: open source software, workflow and implementation best practices, contracts and agreements, etc. We’re working with industry bodies like the Banker’s Association for Finance and Trade (BAFT) and the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) to define and refine the way trade finance will be done on the blockchain.
On the technology front, we’re providing input into the Linux Foundation’s Hyperledger development, and we are one of the early members of the Interledger initiative. Blockice also provides executives and finance professionals with developmental assistance on business and practice aspects of blockchains in trade and supply chains. Just in the last few weeks we have spoken to and educated banks, FI’s and their customers at Fintech events as spread out as Dubai and Indonesia!
3. How does IoT play into Skuchain’s efforts?
There are two areas where our technology and application intersects with the IoT and blockchain-enabled trade finance.
The first is in the way in which Oracles convey signal information to Skuchain. An example would be sensors embedded in large-molecule biologic shipments – they are famously temperature sensitive – that provide accurate real-time insight into spoilage rates. Our Smart Contract application i.e. Brackets, has a framework to accept a signed signal that meets a certain threshold and can be used by existing sensor companies to trigger blockchain events.
The second is in providing a big data analytics framework for supply chain sensor data to the marketplace at large for various decision-making analyses.
The biologics example illustrates a broader observation about the interplay between IoT and Skuchain’s event-triggered Brackets: by connecting the flow of goods to the flow of money, supply chain planners can dynamically incorporate the cost of money in their short- to medium-term TCO calculations.
4. How is Skuchain partnering with Chain of Things (CoT)?
Two areas to explore would be:
- The formulation of standards on how Oracles sign sensor data and place it on the blockchain
- CoT could provide Skuchain with a community of early adopters who would like to provide real use cases around which to build PoCs.
5. How could Skuchain disrupt insurance provision in logistics and shipping? For example, could Skuchain blockchain solutions make it easier for insurers to manage or mitigate risk? Underwrite shipping of goods?
Yes, this is something that has already come up. Access to secure, authentic and verified real-time data in the production, distribution and handling of goods, together with access to historical data, provides information that actuaries and adjusters can use to compute risk and optimize pricing, and even create dynamic risk-based pricing models.