The Swiss startup aXedras is connecting and digitalizing the precious metal industry through their blockchain-based B2B industry platform, digitizing products’ entire life cycles and providing harmonized data standards to the industry. The company now receives support from the Microsoft for Startups program.
The precious metals industry faces various interdependent challenges. Responsible and sustainable sourcing of raw materials and production of refined precious metals are a central issue – they must be properly documented from the beginning to preserve the provenance data for investors. “However, we observed that the industry misses mutual and agreed on data standards. The companies are faced with siloed data, lack of interoperability, increasing regulations and inefficient business-to-business processes,” says Urs Röösli, CEO of aXedras. “This is why we have decided to empower the industry to master these obstacles.”
Through a blockchain-based B2B industry platform, aXedras provides harmonized data standards for product integrity and process workflows for one global industry and all its stakeholders along the value chain. Digital twins of physical products act as data carriers of their provenance, the chain of custody, and are the technical foundation of these digitized B2B processes. Röösli explains: “We enable our customers to increase transparency around the provenance, guarantee integrity of their product data and safe-guard confidentiality of their transactions.” aXedras’ solution also has the potential to be extended to other high value physical assets faced with similar challenges, truly embracing an ecosystem approach. The aXedras ecosystem connects all the players along one value chain and aligns mutually agreed data standards.
But there is a larger societal and environmental aspect of aXedras’ solution: Starting with documentation of sourcing methods, transportation routes and production processes, the general public also gets to know where the precious metals are coming from. “Our solution documents the entire supply chains – from the mine to the refinery and finally to the market. The investors have the possibility to check where their precious metals are coming from: This includes how and by whom precious metals were sourced, transported, and processed. We collaborate with NGOs who supervise and audit the supply chains in the field and now can digitize their processes,” says Röösli. “Our mission is to accelerate the change towards a more sustainable, transparent and also efficient precious metal industry.”
Sustainable digital transformation powered by Azure
aXedras has recently joined the Microsoft for Startups program. “Microsoft offers a holistic software offering which perfectly covers our company’s business needs. The direct support by competent Microsoft employees during software development, the roll-out of our solution or day-to-day questions contributes to focus on bringing our solution to life,” says Philipp Stockinger, Business Development Engineer at aXedras.
Stockinger sees the main advantage of working with Microsoft in its local datacenters in Switzerland: “The Swiss datacenter was a key for us from the beginning when choosing Microsoft’s services: Essential components of our blockchain-based business network run on Azure in Switzerland. Our Swiss-based and also international customers appreciate that their data is stored in Switzerland – for some it is even a mandatory requirement.”
“On our part, we are happy to support aXedras’ drive for a digital transformation of the precious metal industry. We also see a lot of potential in their ecosystem thinking and their technical capability to replicate into other industries,” says Andrew Reid, Head of Microsoft for Startups Switzerland. “What definitely stands out to us the most is aXedras’ goal to transform this industry sustainably with regards to the environment and social equity – by utilizing latest technology.”