Sentinel Chain — a Bridge to Two Worlds

“If you build it, he will come”

This quote originates from “Field of Dreams”, the 1989 movie where the lead character played by Kevin Costner builds a baseball field to attract his idol Shoeless Joe Jackson, a famous professional baseball player who later turns up to play catch.

Real-World vs Crypto-World

This seems to be the maxim generally adopted by a lot of blockchain projects with regards to real-world use cases. The invention of Bitcoin has not created a new order. Rather, it has opened up a parallel world — the crypto-world, and this world is not compatible with the real-world. Use-cases for blockchain with immediate utility and are thriving mainly in the crypto-world — non-fungible crypto-goods like CryptoKitties, decentralized exchanges like Kyber and other crypto-centric projects. The quest for real-world use cases remains to be the holy grail for blockchain.

Sentinel Chain is a project that takes the real-world focused approach. The project was recently cited in the World Economic Forum “Global Financial & Monetary System in 2030” report. “Applicability is across a huge range of existing asset classes and enables the development of new ones (e.g., crypto- currencies). The range is becoming enormous; e.g., fine art (Maecenas), livestock-backed financial services for unbanked (Sentinel Chain), identity verification and attestation (Bloom and Civic) to name but a few.” WEF Global Future Council Financial Monetary Systems Report 2018.

Sentinel Chain is not the only project that has shown success in the real-world. VeChain is another good example of a blockchain company that has demonstrated great strides in this space too.

A New Solution to An Old Problem

Sentinel Chain’s recent announcement of its partnership with Myanmar government is an important milestone.

On May 16, 45 journalists across government, society and business publications attended the post MoU signing press conference (this included a significant number who were not on the original media list but who asked to attend) and we received 33 pieces of writeups to date. These are very strong validations of Sentinel Chain’s use-case at a national-level and its important application for countries with a deeply entrenched agrarian culture. More importantly, the project received simultaneous support by two goverment ministries. The financial and social importance presented by Sentinel Chain is a critical factor for these countries’ stability and progress; it addresses the poverty problem for unbanked farmers who are excluded from the formal financial system and a foundation for the reform of agarian sector.

From the finance ministries’ standpoint, Sentinel Chain is a (new) solution that replaces traditional approaches to their financial inclusion problem, enabling the collateralisation of livestock, that in turn enables liquidity. For agriculture ministries, the ability for unbanked farmers to raise funds through livestock can improve the overall productivity and economy in the agriculture sector. This goal converges with that of the finance ministries to enhance the livelihood of farmers.

Gateway to Real-World Use Cases

As a result of these, Sentinel Chain is creating a Sentinel Cross-Chain Bridge where blockchain communities can deliver their services into an otherwise closed market. This attracts partners that can access Sentinel Chain and leverage on the livestock data, the identity of the ‘unbanked’ and asset ownership details to create solutions with their service offerings.

Sentinel Chain is implemented as an EVM-based platform that makes use of the Proof-of-Authority (POA) consensus protocol. Unlike trustless blockchain networks, Sentinel Chain’s security is governed and managed by approved validators. Essentially, Sentinel Chain is a consortium side-chain to the Ethereum Foundation’s mainnet. This is to overcome the scalability, performance and price volatility issues associated with public blockchains.

The validators on Sentinel Chain are economic actors that are legal business entities with verifiable identities via their country’s company registrar authorities with a healthy business and financial track records using auditable financial statements. For a start, the Sentinel Cross-Chain Bridge will be designed to allow ERC20 tokens from Ethereum mainnet to be transferred into Sentinel Chain.

Unlike ERC20 tokens running on the Ethereum mainnet which caters for a fully untrusted environment, Sentinel Chain offers an alternative trusted environment for the ERC-20 tokens to operate in with access to real markets

This is an incentive to other ERC20 tokens to participate in Sentinel Chain’s network versus a fully untrusted environment, and gaining access to real-users with proven needs. In the real-world, a fully untrusted environment is seldom practical. In business-to-consumers environment, consumers depend on brands they can trust and service providers that can be accountable for their services, with a channel for recourse. In a business-to-business environment, this criterion is even more critical since business entities need to know the verified legal identity of the entity they are dealing with, where commercial agreements can be enforceable.

We are following hot-on-the-heels of our success of the Myanmar use-case and focusing on forging technology partnerships. We will be announcing some major partnerships in the following weeks to demonstrate the value that Sentinel Chain can offer to the Ethereum community. As more markets get connected to Sentinel Chain, partners will be able to gain access to a larger and more extensive pool of users and increasing the utility needs for SENC.

Sentinel Chain is a blockchain-based international marketplace for cross-border financial services and the world’s first platform to accept the use of livestock as collateral. Taking a unique approach to the last mile problem of financial inclusion, the Sentinel Chain model establishes livestock provenance through the creation of livestock insurance on blockchain — the registration of livestock provenance on blockchain provides the unbanked with a new opportunity: the real possibility of accepting livestock as ‘collateral’ for loans. Sentinel Chain is a project by InfoCorp Technologies