Berlin, April 16, 2020 - Minespider, a blockchain protocol for responsible raw material tracking, has raised a total of €2.8 million from combined sources, including the EU Commission’s H2020’s SME Instrument Phase 2.
Founder and CEO, Nathan Williams, stated; “This is an immense step forward for Minespider and our vision of a future where supply chains are transparent and sustainable.”
Minespider is an open blockchain protocol founded in 2018. As a team of ten, Minespider is based in Berlin, with operations in both Switzerland and Brazil. Their platform allows companies to create digital passports for their raw materials that keep track of where the materials come from and the conditions under which they were produced. The passports contain data that allows companies to verify that the materials they receive were produced in environmentally and socially sustainable ways.
Minespider passports separate data into three different layers, depending on whether the data should be publicly visible, visible to members of the same supply chain, or private between a company and their customer. This allows companies to share sensitive transparency information with their customers and others further down the supply chain securely. Minespider makes it possible to do this without a single trusted company running the system, using an advanced encryption system. This means that companies using Minespider retain total control over their own data.
Since its founding, Minespider has launched several traceability projects with industry players. In 2018, Minespider partnered with Google to create a multi-stakeholder end-to-end mineral traceability consortium for the tin supply chain. The project formally commenced in 2019, with the addition of Cisco, SGS, Volkswagen, and Peruvian mining company Minsur, and has successfully tracked tin end-to-end and is now planning to incorporate new members.
In spring 2019, Minespider announced a joint project with Volkswagen to track their lead battery supply chain. This ongoing circular economy project involves two-thirds of the company’s global lead supply. Volkswagen intends this as a first step to employ blockchain technology for additional raw materials and supply chains.
“It has been an amazing experience to bring together so many industry leaders to work together on traceability,” Williams stated, “Now, with the backing of the European Commission and our investors we can scale the platform, bringing on many more participants who believe in the vision of transparent and responsible products.”
Part of funding came from the Horizon 2020 programme, where the European Commission selects potentially disruptive businesses to invest in and support as part of the SME Instrument. Minespider was chosen as a highly innovative SME and awarded ‘Very Good to Excellent (4.5 – 5)’ for all three key assessment criteria.
Williams highlighted; “This funding shows how ready the EU Commission is to invest in these emerging and future technologies.”
[🇪🇺This project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No 946437.]