The group of international entrepreneurs will soon launch the world’s first Blockchain token backed by an industrial commodity. ZrCoin will be a derivative – the option to buy an equivalent amount of synthetic Zirconium Dioxide (ZrO2), a highly in-demand product used as a refractory material in numerous different manufacturing processes. Funding for a new production plant will be secured by a crowdsale of the ZrCoin token.
The team of scientists and industrialists, spearheaded by financial analyst and Blockchain expert Andrey Nikonorov, has developed a new green process for producing ZrO2 from waste materials, rather than extracting it from existing or newly-discovered deposits. In addition to using cutting-edge manufacturing techniques, the project will also leverage the latest financial technology. The Blockchain has long been held up as a solution to the inefficiencies of global markets, but until now the advantages have never been realised in practice. ZrCoin will be the first major globally traded Blockchain security that is backed by a real commodity.
ZrO2 is a scarce material that is used in the production of ceramics and in other applications where physico-chemical resilience under high temperatures and adverse conditions is required. It is a structural component of alloys used in the construction of atomic reactors, and critical elements of chemical reactors, artificial joints and prostheses are made of Zirconium. It is used to produce high-temperature ceramics (refractory products) and is the refractory material with the best price-quality relationship rating.
The demand for synthetic zirconium is such that investors will be repaid, at a significant premium, from the profits of the operation. Buy-backs will start no later than eight months from the end of the crowdsale, and the token will trade on the market in the mean time. ZrCoin will also be redeemable for a unit of physical ZrO2, if desired.
New economy, new technology
The decision to launch the endeavour on the Blockchain is both a practical necessity and an opportunity to catalyse a new kind of economy.
“The reality is that banks do not give money for ideas like this,’ explained Andrey Nikonorov. “Mainstream outside investors wanted to own 70-80% of the business, which we were not prepared to accept. So alongside our new green manufacturing technologies, we have developed a new way of structuring investment and perhaps pioneered a new means of commodity trading.”
Because the value of ZrO2 is priced in USD and is relatively stable, ZrCoin will have protection from the volatility that is otherwise endemic in the cryptocurrency world – making it an attractive ‘safe haven’ asset for traders. Moreover, investors can receive their money back at any point after the end of the ICO.
The ZrCoin ICO will seek to raise a minimum of $3.5 million. Investors will be able to deposit via wire transfer as well as with bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies. Larger amounts would allow the construction of two production lines, accelerating the process and allowing faster buy-back of ZrCoins.
Founder and publisher of industry publication Blockchain News (EST 2015), a partner at ICO services collective Token.Agency ($750m+ and 90+ ICOs and STOs), director of education company Blockchain Partners (Oracle Partner) – Vancouver native Richard Kastelein is an award-winning publisher, innovation executive and entrepreneur. He sits on the advisory boards of some two dozen Blockchain startups and has written over 1500 articles on Blockchain technology and startups at Blockchain News and has also published pioneering articles on ICOs in Harvard Business Review and Venturebeat.Irish Tech News put him in the top 10 Token Architects in Europe.
Kastelein has an Ad Honorem - Honorary Ph.D. and is Chair Professor of Blockchain at China's first Blockchain University in Nanchang at the Jiangxi Ahead Institute of Software and Technology. In 2018 he was invited to and attended University of Oxford's Saïd Business School for Business Automation 4.0 programme. Over a half a decade experience judging and rewarding some 1000+ innovation projects as an EU expert for the European Commission's SME Instrument programme as a startup assessor and as a startup judge for the UK government's Innovate UK division.
Kastelein has spoken (keynotes & panels) on Blockchain technology in Amsterdam, Antwerp, Barcelona, Beijing, Brussels, Bucharest, Dubai, Eindhoven, Gdansk, Groningen, the Hague, Helsinki, London (5x), Manchester, Minsk, Nairobi, Nanchang, Prague, San Mateo, San Francisco, Santa Clara (2x), Shanghai, Singapore (3x), Tel Aviv, Utrecht, Venice, Visakhapatnam, Zwolle and Zurich.
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.