There’s been a lot of discussion surrounding digital money and blockchain advancements around the individuals who are either completely evangelized or are in effect so. However, for some others, the advantages will hopefully be unnoticed.
It’s the manner by which technology ought to be – if it’s hard to utilize then it isn’t doing its job.
This is the way Beam, a startup based crosswise over three continents, intends to put blockchain to use in the retail business.
As indicated by IHS Markit, retail and eCommerce will release $164 billion in ‘probable’ business value by 2030 as a result of an ascent in the number of blockchain ventures that are started and conveyed.
Beam highlights the reason for opening its platform on its ICO page:
“In the future of retail, all our data belongs to us, the customer, and we get paid to share it. This has created a waste-free world where every product and service is perfectly matched to our needs and wants. Every product and service knows its customer before it is produced, and they find us at the right time, right place, and for the right price.”
In the recent events, Shezan Amiji, co-founder of Beam, was conversing with a retail partner, who had been in the business for almost 20 years, and asked how much money had been paid in processing fees to Visa and Mastercard over the years. The answer was around $400 million. Amiji then asked: Have either of those companies sent a Christmas card for being such a loyal customer in those 20 years?
And as Amiji puts it:
“This is a small example of how incumbents in the retail ecosystem are extracting value out of it but are not adding the commensurate value back into it.”
With blockchain, therefore, the retailer and the end user should win.
Another advantage that Beam has is its age. In the world of startup and crypto, a company that is six years old is almost an eternity. Of course, the interest in the blockchain is relatively new, however, Beam has been focused in the payments ecosystem previously. The mission itself hasn’t changed that much, but the journey has.
“We’ve made a lot of mistakes over the last six years – those mistakes are invaluable in terms of learning. We understand the challenges and the issues of the retail ecosystem perhaps better than most because we’ve been fully immersed in it. The solution already works [and] already solves problems for existing members of the retail ecosystem – now we want to broaden it and deepen it.”
Ariane, a startup focusing on luxury products on the blockchain, stated that one particular aspect of retail is that third parties are often regarded suspiciously. Amiji agrees:
“The larger the retailer, the more they want to do themselves because they think they can do it themselves. The problem has always been that – I think there’s a degree of self-awareness sinking into the retail economy – they’re probably better equipped to do some things rather than others. I think there is a growing realization that they should focus on what they’re really good at and leave the rest to people who are specialized.”
With this, then innovation can thrive. Take real-time pricing algorithms as an example. That’s what the blockchain allows you to do as well. It allows you to deliver specialized services on a common platform, and by creating an open network, an open platform, it allows people to develop a specific and really narrow range of expertise that’s very deep and that can help.”
All in all, the organization will probably unite possibly disparate groups together, which is its ultimate goal. It is that, instead of only an essential trust contention, which Amiji sees as key.
“I have a slightly different perspective. I think what blockchain does is allows people to work together, but not necessarily trust each other to work together. For example, it allows people to partner and cooperates who would not be willing to cooperate otherwise.
“The fact that it’s decentralized, and there’s no one entity that controls all that information, everyone that’s on the platform controls their access to that information, and that is a powerful thing of the blockchain. Rather than introducing trust in the economy, and into the system, it eliminates the need for trust.”