This Entrepreneur Seeks To Decentralize Global Logistics Using Tokens And Smart Contracts
This post was originally produced for Forbes.
You can download an audio podcast here or subscribe via iTunes or Google Play.
Imagine you are a rural farmer in Kenya who wants to ship some seeds to a rural farmer in Nepal who is willing to pay for them, having learned of one another via a rural farmers group on Facebook. To say that it would be difficult only hints at the challenge.
The Kenyan farmer would likely have to travel to a large city where he could find access to safe, reliable international shipping. The Nepali farmer would similarly have to visit a city to pick up the package and, if it had not arrived, would have to return another day. Days of productivity would be lost for a task that most readers would consider a trivial task.
Oren Gampel, 46, an Israeli entrepreneur with two successful exits under his belt, has set his heart on decentralizing the $300 billion global shipping industry. By creating a blockchain token and smart contracts that allow for a variety of actors to handle and transfer custody of a single package, a Kenyan with a pickup truck lives in or near the village of the first farmer and a Nepali with a motorbike in the village of the second farmer join the global logistics system.
In Gampel’s vision, each person or entity who takes custody would not only record their possession of the package but would also enter into a smart contract providing collateral for the package during the time they hold it, even if it is just a few minutes as a bike messenger dashes from a commercial office downtown New York to a nearby FedEx location. As each entity in the chain takes a turn, it receives compensation agreed upon in advance by the shipper—be that a farmer in Kenya or an ad agency in New York.
Yariv Gilat, an investor in Gampel’s PaKet Project, as he calls it, says, “Using the blockchain protocol, together with the required smart contract to establish definitive trust is a non-linear change in the market. I expect this project to offer another proposition to the delivery world, in such a way that can potentially become the main way of transferring value.”
Oren Gampel, The PaKet Project CREDIT: RONENGOLDMAN.COM
Gampel is an entrepreneur who is driven by a mission. “We believe in breaking up monopolies and giving power to the people.”
His model would not be an alternative to industry giants. Instead, he envisions that it would simply allow disparate players in the global logistics world to hand off packages more readily from one to another, including informal players like bike messengers in New York or even just a friend with a motorcycle and a smartphone in Nepal, typically leaving the big incumbents to handle air and ocean transit.
Gampel’s model is not just an idea. An accomplished entrepreneur, he has been working on the model with a team now ten strong to build out the model. A 100 package test of the system is scheduled for October.
Like many in the blockchain community, Gampel laces his pitch with libertarian language. “As an engineer, I know that centrally-governed systems are more prone to failure and waste, while distributed systems are harder to create, but are much more robust and efficient. Tyranny is simple and less efficient, while federated governance is trickier but much more robust.”
Extending the thought, he explains his claim to being a social entrepreneur. “By giving the right tools to the society, society itself can solve its own problems in a very efficient way. I’m a social entrepreneur in that I create a system for society that removes the need for a central authority.”
Gampel’s PaKet Project is completely open-source, he says. In this way, anyone can copy the applications and improve upon them.
With this model, Gampel hopes to profit not from the operation of the business, but from the appreciation of the token used on the platform.
Gampel shares his vision, “We decentralize global deliveries, and allow many small independent local couriers to deliver packages between them on a global scale. We allow anyone, from anywhere, to take part in the global commerce, including rural areas that the global companies do not cater. ”
Gilat, the investor, sounds a cautious note on this front, “If I had to take a guess, of how this project will evolve in the developing world, I would likely say that it might take a little longer; however, I usually am wrong in prediction.” In this case, I hope he is.
Be a hero! Join the elite group of supporters who ensure that stories like this can continue to be shared! Visit heroes4good.org to become a hero now.
The post This Entrepreneur Seeks To Decentralize Global Logistics Using Tokens And Smart Contracts appeared first on GoodCrowd.info.