American Company The Seam to Form Cotton Blockchain Consortium with IBM on Hyperledger Fabric

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US Commodities trading and agribusiness software provider The Seam has announced that it is forming a Blockchain consortium for the global cotton industry in tandem with IBM. The company intends to lead an industry-wide collaboration initiative to create a supply chain and trading ecosystem built on IBM’s technology, specifically using Hyperledger’s Fabric.

“This new technology will be transformational for the cotton industry,” said Mark Pryor, Chairman and CEO of The Seam. “There are numerous organizations, processes, systems and transactions involved from field to fabric. Situated at the intersection of agriculture, finance and technology, The Seam with the help of IBM, is uniquely positioned to introduce Blockchain technology to cotton-affiliated businesses worldwide.”

The Seam has a successful history of innovation. In 2000, the company began operating the world’s first online, neutral trading exchange for cotton, on which tens of millions of bales have been traded and cleared on its platforms. In September 2016, The Seam launched a cloud-based commodity management system for the peanut industry, the first of its kind.

Blockchain technology encourages broad involvement with the benefits of a network effect, whereby a service becomes more valuable the more participation it has. IBM will play a key role in driving global adoption, with its digital footprint in all cotton-producing and consuming regions.

“Blockchain offers enormous potential to drive innovation throughout the cotton industry,” said Arvind Krishna, Senior Vice President, IBM Research. “A consortium approach using IBM Blockchain and the Hyperledger Fabric can help create greater efficiency and serve as the foundation of a robust system for massive collaboration.”

The ownership group of The Seam includes renowned cotton leaders Calcot, Cargill, ECOM Agroindustrial Corporation Ltd., EWR, Inc., Louis Dreyfus Company, Olam International, Parkdale Mills, Plains Cotton Cooperative Association and Staple Cotton Cooperative Association.

The Seam was founded by leading global agribusiness companies and specializes in commodity trading and management systems. In December 2000, it began operating the world’s first completely online, anonymous exchange for cotton trading. Since that time, the company has leveraged its software platforms and application development ability to expand into other commodity segments, including grains, peanuts and dairy. As a proven leader in the FinTech space, The Seam has cleared or processed more than $7 billion through its cloud-based platforms. For more information, visit www.theseam.com.

About Richard Kastelein

Founder of industry publication Blockchain News, partner at ICO services collective CryptoAsset Design Group (helped raise over $200m+), director of education company Blockchain Partners (Oracle Partner) and ICO event organiser at leading industry event  CryptoFinancing (first ICO event in Europe) - Richard Kastelein is an award-winning publisher, innovation executive and entrepreneur. He sits on the advisory boards of half a dozen Blockchain startups and has written over 1200 articles on Blockchain technology and startups at Blockchain News and has also published pioneering articles on ICOs in Harvard Business Review and Venturebeat.
 
Kastelein has spoken (keynotes & panels) on Blockchain technology in Amsterdam, Antwerp, Barcelona, Beijing, Brussels, Bucharest, Dubai, Eindhoven, Gdansk, Groningen, the Hague, Helsinki, London, Manchester, Minsk, Nairobi, Nanchang, San Mateo, Shanghai,Tel Aviv and Venice. His network is global and extensive.
 
He is a Canadian (Dutch/Irish/English/Métis) whose writing career has ranged from the Canadian Native Press (Arctic) to the Caribbean & Europe. He's written occasionally for Harvard Business Review, Wired, Venturebeat, The Guardian and Virgin.com and his work and ideas have been translated into Dutch, Greek, Polish, German and French.
 
A journalist by trade, an entrepreneur and adventurer at heart, Kastelein's professional career has ranged from political publishing to TV technology, boatbuilding to judging startups, skippering yachts to marketing and more as he's travelled for nearly 30 years as a Canadian expatriate living around the world.
 
In his 20s, he sailed around the world on small yachts and wrote a series of travel articles called, "The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Seas' travelling by hitching rides on yachts (1989) in major travel and yachting publications. He currently lives in Groningen, Netherlands where he's raising three teenage daughters with his wife and sailing partner, Wieke Beenen.

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