In this new monthly Strategic Sourceror series I’ll be reviewing all matters in New and Emerging 
Tech. My goal in this series will be to share insightful considerations on emerging tech trends and the respective sourcing implications/implementation for your businesses and stakeholders.  This series will be kept at monthly review to cover only the most relevant information in the industry - so please feel free to sign up for our monthly News Letter to keep your business in the know and innovating.  

First up in the series, and what better place to start, than the highly anticipated tech and promise Supply chain's across the world have for Blockchain. This tech has been piloted in the most notoriously difficult industries in the world for buyers and sellers.   

Problem: Fraud. Solution – Blockchain? The Diamond Trade: Supply Chain Folk, Take Notes.

Is Blockchain the “TECH” that will make all of your supply chain troubles go away? Potentially. But one thing is for sure, there are still many problems that both MFG industries and the technologies need to work through before the major tipping point occurs. Just like in any new tech that shows promise, there will always be earlier adopters that urgently need the promise this solution makes, PERIOD. One of these industries that has more than theoretical hype is the Diamond Industry. The social/moral justice concerns, popularized by Leonardo Di-Caprio’s Blood Diamond, now finally has a solution that beats Leonardo’s machete to cut through the forest of corrupted local forces as the foremost “tough guy” in the country (smh). That solution and company name is Everledger, a provider of the immutable ledger for diamond ownership and related transaction history verification.

This solution is the story of young tech that as of a couple years ago was considered a “moon-shot”.  But through creative application, the sourcing and purchasing of diamonds has become much more transparent for the benefit of the industry overall. In 2012 alone, 65% of fraudulent claims went undetected -costing nearly $3 billion USD annually (in just direct costs.) With claims of fraud this high it is no wonder that this industry has been one of the first to take on the blockchain charge.

To date, there are 2M stones registered on Everledger’s semi-private network. While the program only tracks quality and stone. There is much hope that this can begin to track history and other factors alike with 100% certainty. This process has been unverified previously through paper records and fragmented networks. And while maybe your next diamond can be less expensive (though unlikely, as we all know diamonds are artificially inflated market), these diamonds that are being tracked seek a 30% consumer premium. The market premium will eventually normalize once this guarantee on quality of purchase reaches entire ubiquity.

To the un-familiar eye this advent seems like a digitization play but there is much more under the hood here. Digitization seems in comparison as though it is for the digitization’s sake and the relative internal use of that effort. The point use-case for diamond trade was to bring transparency through digitization. And primarily because the goods at trade are so pricey we can let the diamond industry pave the way and be the frontier in this new supply chain wading through uncharted waters. This tech is here to stay and you need not fret this impending change. It will very likely come to your organization agnostic of the crypto-currency taint that is currently beginning to face regulator pressures. More to the point, Blockchain tech can be incorporated for efficiency gains and what we like to call an Enterprise Resource Plan 3.0 that will revolutionize the matter in which operationally disparate systems and firms/groups operate.
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Faris Jebara

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