UNICEF funds around $100k in six blockchain start-ups to solve global challenges
UNICEF recently announced that it will be funding research into blockchain technology. The charity arm for children of United Nations is investing around $100,000 in six blockchain start-ups.
UNICEF is funding to “solve global challenges” using the technology. It includes health-care delivery transparency as well as things like managing finances and resources. According to the press release published on Monday, the six companies include Atix Labs, Onesmart, Prescrypto, Statwig, Utopixar and W3 Engineers. They aim to deliver “open-source prototypes of blockchain applications” within a period of 12-months.
Interestingly, all the start-ups are based in a developing countries as the firms are based out of Argentina, Mexico, India, Tunisia and Bangladesh. Atix Labs and Onesmart are developing platforms to track finances; Prescrypto to track patient histories; Statwig to ensure vaccine delivery; Utopixar working on a social collaboration tool and W3 Engineers is working on an offline networking system which will not require internet access.
The six companies were selected from more than 100 applications across 50 countries to build prototypes for global problems. The press release reveals that it is a part of a broader program which funds 20 technology start-ups already.
“Blockchain technology is still at an early stage — and there is a great deal of experimentation, failure, and learning ahead of us as we see how, and where, we can use this technology to create a better world,” said Chris Fabian, Principal Adviser, UNICEF Innovation.
“That’s exactly the stage when UNICEF Innovation Fund invests: when our financing, technical support, and focus on vulnerable populations can help a technology grow and mature in the most fair and equitable way possible,” Fabian added.
Apart from funding the companies, UNICEF’s Innovation Fund will also be providing technology assistance, support with business growth, and access to a network of experts and partners.
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