Quadrans launches blockchain platform in ASEAN

Marco Vitale, founding member and President of Quadrans Foundation. (Photo courtesy of Quadrans Foundation)

The Quadrans Foundation, established in 2018 and based in Mendrisio, Switzerland, has announced the official public launch of its blockchain platform. The platform will be made available to Southeast Asia and the rest of the world as of 1 April, 2019. 

The Quadrans platform is an open source, public and decentralised blockchain, making it possible to perform Smart Contract operations. Quadrans will allow you to integrate and share data of a heterogeneous nature and in synergy with any public or private entity. Quadrans’ infrastructure is open to anyone who wants to integrate data flows and blockchain operations at any level.

The Quadrans Foundation brings together influential personalities linked to the academic and economic world of blockchain technology. These personalities have combined their expertise with the aim of conducting research and development (R&D) activities, promoting, and providing education and support on blockchain technology, in particular, the Quadrans blockchain.

In an exclusive interview, The ASEAN Post had the opportunity to ask Marco Vitale, founding member and President of Quadrans Foundation several questions regarding the foundation, its blockchain platform and plans for the Southeast Asian region. 

How did the Quadrans Foundation come about? 

Marco: Chronologically, Foodchain was created first. The expertise in blockchain-related aspects (hardware/software, smart contracts, consensus protocols, mining, cryptocurrencies, cybersecurity, Internet of Things (IoT), etc.) and the experience grown over the years through on-field applications is what drove the founders’ decision to establish Quadrans Foundation and pursue the mission to build a suitable blockchain-based platform for industrial operations.

What does it do?

Marco: Quadrans Foundation is a non-profit legal entity constituted in Switzerland under the Swiss jurisdiction. The Foundation will serve the general public’s interest by bringing benefits to the community of users at an international level. The objective of Quadrans Foundation is to conduct R&D activities, support the adoption and educate the community regarding the use of the Quadrans’ blockchain technology.

What are Smart Contracts?

Marco: Smart Contracts are computer programs stored on the blockchain used to verify actions and enforce the terms of a contract without the need of a third party. They can perform various tasks from the transfer/conversion of value to the enforcement of selective access to information and operations.

Smart Contracts are reliable as the source code can be released to the public and allow auditors to verify whether they are genuine. Once a Smart Contract is deployed its immutable, hence operations are performed in a transparent way, allowing auditors to check and verify the outcome against expected correct values.

Smart Contracts can be used to store information and automate actions. For example, they can be used to check and verify processes along a supply chain of food products: given a defined amount of ingredients in step A, a smart contract can verify that the amount of product in step B is within the expected ranges and approve the process or raise a flag for further inspection and evaluation.

What is the relationship between Foodchain and Quadrans?

Marco: The Foundation conducts constant R&D activities to deliver Quadrans’ open technology worldwide and to empower enterprises with a blockchain-based tool for their services. In this scenario, Foodchain was the first adopter of Quadrans and provides solutions to enable traceability and transparency along supply chains, with the Food and Beverage (F&B) industry being the main area of deployment of Quadrans. 

Confident of the experience accumulated over the past years, Foodchain also serves as a system integrator and consultant to assist enterprises in the adoption of blockchain solutions for applications in any field.

What’s special about permission-less blockchain technology? 

Marco: Distributed ledger technology (DLT) is a technology used since the 1990s born from distributed databases where data is stored in multiple places at the same time. DLTs have no central data store but might have a centralised governance feature. Also, DLTs are often geographically centralised in a few - or sometimes a single - data centre. In DLTs, each node might (but is not required to) comply to a consensus algorithm or independent verification and check of new data received in its copy of the ledger. Also, being an extension of the distributed database concept, DLTs cannot natively provide any guarantee concerning data immutability or timestamping.

Permission-less blockchain is a very specific new type of DLT based on a shared protocol that requires each node to check and approve received data according to a shared consensus algorithm. Permission-less blockchain is formed from many nodes (thousands or dozens of thousands) scattered around the planet. The consensus algorithm is designed around game theory and a rewarding system that results in high security both for each single node and for the whole network. 

Blockchain is a write-only structure, data can only be appended, is immutable, and therefore has strong timestamping features. Those features make it possible for blockchain applications to have an unprecedented level of accountability, capable of removing the need of intermediaries or trust-enforcing figures. 

Who do you work with in Southeast Asia? 

Marco: There are important collaborations in the region with researchers and institutions for the R&D of the technology as well as enterprises and individuals for its deployment into business operations.

Numerous people are already working on the Quadrans project and are directly involved in the activities of the Foundation for the Southeast Asian region. Among others are Azizi Meor Ngah, Malaysian business leader and advisor for various local and international government agencies; Albert Tan, Associate Professor at Malaysia Institute for Supply Chain Innovation and MIT researcher; and Massimiliano Sala, director of Laboratory of Cryptography and Industrial Mathematics (CryptoLabTN) of the University of Trento.

Important personalities join the Quadrans Foundation almost every day and public announcements will be made from time to time. We encourage readers of The ASEAN Post to visit the Quadrans website to keep up to date with the latest news and developments.

What are your plans for the region?  

Marco: There are strategic partnerships and new collaborations on the way in the Southeast Asian region. We intend to contribute to the development of Southeast Asia through innovation, by providing a powerful technological tool that is open and accessible to the community worldwide.

We aim to contribute to solving some of the problems related to transparency of information, data integrity and sustainability of processes for sensitive markets in the region (such as Palm Oil, the Halal industry, etc.), as well as supporting enterprises by bringing operative advantages in terms of data security and information management.

As ASEAN enters the Fourth Industrial Revolution, it is good to know that organisations such as the Quadrans Foundation are already looking at how they can contribute to the growth, development and prosperity of the region. 

For more information on the Quadrans Foundation and blockchain technology please visit https://quadrans.io/