The United Nations International Children’s Emergency Fund (UNICEF) is investing in 6 blockchain startups that could well benefit humanity. The startups will be receiving a sum of $100,000. The amount will help them develop an open source prototype over the course of next year.
The amount that will be invested in these blockchain projects, is part of a program that already has over 20 technology startups, ranging from, “data science and machine learning, to virtual reality, to drones.”
It was in January 2018, UNICEF welcomed technology startups that were registered under one of UNICEF’s programme countries. The organization received over 100 applications from 50 different countries.
UNICEF’s latest investments in blockchain startups is a part of their broad strategy towards their initiative of improving humanity. The investments were first to be made in February 2016 but were only called out to firms in a detailed manner at the start of this year.
Chris Fabian, Principal Adviser at UNICEF Innovation, said:
“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,”
Atix Labs from Argentina is into building platforms for small and medium-sized enterprises that will enable access to funding, that offers a tracking facility of where and how the funds are utilized.
Onesmart and Prescrypto, are the two startups based in Mexico. Onesmart will be working on an application focusing on addressing the issue of misuse of funds in emerging markets.
Prescrypto, on the other hand, will work on enhancing the availability of electronic prescriptions, by creating an exclusive platform for medical service providers to view a patient’s history.
Statwig from India is building a blockchain solution, for seamless delivery of vaccines via an improved supply chain management system. Bangladesh’s W3 Engineers are working towards a more noble cause by connecting migrant and refugee communities with offline mobile networking platform, without having to use any SIM or an internet connection.
Utopixar from Tunisia will create a social collaboration tool that will facilitate better decision making and value transfer for communities and organizations.
Apart from the funding, UNICEF will assist with products and technology, also providing access to a network of partners and experts. The Fund also plans for a second round of investment and give additional support to companies it has invested in.
The technologies that received funding, if these attain success, there is a significant opportunity for them to apply in 190 countries and territories, where UNICEF currently operates.