Toronto-based startup Convergence.tech has successfully concluded a blockchain-based pilot to help Mongolian nomadic herders track and certify sustainable cashmere. The supply chain project, which was conducted with the United Nations Development Program (UNDP), is powered by Convergence.tech’s Ethereum-based traceability platform, Backbone.
Convergence.tech chose to focus on cashmere herders for its pilot, as many of these individuals face harsh working conditions and income instability. Moreover, the fashion supply chain lacks transparency, making it difficult for consumers to understand where cashmere products originate. Convergence.tech CEO, Chami Akmeemana, told betakit:
“The nomadic community is one of immense pride but one with a volatile and unstable income. Leveraging blockchain technology within the transformation of the cashmere industry can provide numerous benefits for Mongolian herders, buyers, and sellers alike.”
In order to solve the lack of transparency facing the cashmere industry, Convergence.tech created a mobile application for Android devices. The app allowed farmers to register their cashmere bales. At the same time, bales and packing slips were equipped with radio-frequency identification tags used to track data to ensure the location of products. The tracking data combined with Backbone’s blockchain technology allowed users to see the path the cashmere took during its production lifecycle. Users could also view the environmental impact data generated to ensure that ethical raw cashmere was being sourced. Akmeemana told Betakit that the company’s findings were big enough to inspire plans to expand the app to other regions:
“Our learnings are pretty significant on this, and that’s why everything was around watching from afar. But now that that’s completed, we’ve been going around the world. We were in Singapore and Bangkok a couple of weeks ago presenting to the UN, USAID (the United States Agency for International Development), the World Bank, et cetera. So now we’re going to start seeing a lot more applications coming out.”
Founded in 2018, Convergence.tech has already developed a blockchain-enabled land registry for the state of Haryana in India. The company also conducted a project in Afghanistan to apply blockchain within existing police payroll systems. Convergence.tech plans to announce more projects in the coming months, as the company recently received a proposal to conduct work in Peru and are looking for opportunities to scale climate action.
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.