AB InBev, the company behind the Budweiser brand, is helping local African farmers to prove their income using blockchain, Yahoo Finance reports on Jan. 21. A blockchain-based system developed in partnership with BanQu tracks all the local suppliers of AB InBev, replacing the paper trail. AB InBev is a multinational conglomerate born out of the merger of several established beer producers. It includes Budweiser, Stella Artois and Corona as some of its most recognizable brands.
The company has adopted a strategy of using local suppliers, receiving tax breaks for their added contribution to the country’s economy. However, this proved to be more challenging in Africa, a continent where banking infrastructure remains underdeveloped and paper documents are difficult to obtain for rural farmers. Partnering with BanQu, a company specializing in blockchain supply chain solutions, AB InBev introduced a distributed ledger system that tracks all the local farmers that supply barley and malt to the company. This allows them to prove their income to local banks, and thus open bank accounts and lines of credit. The CEO of AB InBev, Carlos Brito, explained at the World Economic Forum in Davos:
“And now this farmer, who was never bankable — because she couldn’t prove income of any source, had no reports, or material or paperwork — now in a flip phone, she has in the blockchain proof that she is a supplier to AB InBev, a global company.”
Access to banking allows the local farmers to finance more efficient farming tools, increasing their yields and receiving more money. The system also helps to curtail corruption introduced by middlemen who consolidated the shipments to the breweries. Brito noted that they were “not necessarily passing the money we were paying to him or her to [the farmer].” A tamper-proof blockchain system ensures that the farmers are able to prove what they are owed. Brito further elaborated on the benefits of the system:
“They become commercial farmers and everybody wins. Consumers are safer and we create more formal jobs. The government collects taxes. Instead of sending the money to Europe, or Australia, or Canada buying barley or malt, we keep the money there.”
The BanQu product has reportedly been implemented with thousands of farmers across Uganda and also India. Uganda is one African country where blockchain is taking hold. Binance opened a local branch in 2018, though the country’s central bank remains skeptical of decentralized cryptocurrencies. Crypto-based Ponzi schemes are also present, with the Dunamiscoins pyramid recently defrauding over 10,000 users for $2.5 million.
3 Big Blockchain Firms Working Together On A DeFi Product That Pays Passive Income
In a special announcement made at the Unitize conference on July 6, Cosmos, Polkadot, and Terra revealed a new DeFi savings product called Anchor that aims to offer dependable interest rates on stablecoins deposits. The companies involved in the creation of Anchor plan to launch it across their respective blockchains at the end of Q3 this year and scale across to other PoS blockchains in the future. Do Kwon, founder and CEO of Terra, explained in a prepared statement:
“While DeFi staples such as Maker and Compound have been revolutionary in creating fully decentralized crypto money markets, the volatility of their interest rates makes them unsuitable to be used as a household savings product. DeFi mass adoption needs the creation of a fully decentralized savings account that offers dependable APR.”
Anchor’s smart contracts receive stablecoin deposits and use a portion of them to acquire staking positions on compatible Proof of Stake blockchains. Users will receive their passive income from these staking rewards. The initial governance for this platform will come from the Interchain Asset Association (IAA), a newly formed organization that sees Zaki Manian of Cosmos, Jack Platts of the Web3 Foundation, and Do Kwon of Terraform Labs collectively steering the ship.
Telegram Is Set To Shut Down The TON Testnet By August 2020
Although Telegram has terminated its blockchain project, Telegram Open Network (TON), in May 2020, the TON test net has been apparently running for almost one year. In a July 6 update, the official TON development group on Telegram announced that it would be discontinuing its support of the test network for TON. Remaining TON validators will be turned off by August 1. In the post, the TON official recommended network participants save all their relevant data and stop their testing processes. Despite the testnet being set to shut down less than a month from now, network participants will still be able to continue their experimentation after the testnet is terminated. In order to do that, users can install their own testnet validators, described in greater detail in three different how-to documents containing guidelines for the Full Node, the Validator, and Test Grams.
Telegram launched the TON testnet for explorer and node software on Sept. 6, 2019. In anticipation of its scheduled Oct. 31 launch last year, the company released an alpha version of an iOS wallet to work with its native token, the Gram. But Telegram’s TON plans were never fully realized, as the United States Securities and Exchange Commission suddenly deemed Telegram’s $1.7 billion ICO illegal in mid-October. After a long-running legal battle with U.S. regulators, Telegram agreed to shut down its TON project, as well as return $1.2 billion to investors in line with a court-approved final settlement. As officially announced by Telegram CEO Pavel Durov, the firm had already reimbursed more than $1.2 billion by June 25.
Brock Pierce Enters The 2020 US Presidential Race
Brock Pierce, entrepreneur, crypto venture capitalist, and child star, has announced his USA Presidential run on Twitter July 5. His tweet stated: “
“I, Brock Pierce, am running for President of the United States of America.”
Pierce’s campaign site states that he is a pioneer digital currency and has raised more than $5 billion for the companies he has founded. Pierce is the Chairman of the Bitcoin Foundation and co-founder of EOS Alliance, Block.one, Blockchain Capital, Tether, and Mastercoin (first ICO). His website, sparse on details, does not say if he is seeking a nomination in a political party or if he is running as an Independent.