ArcadierX: Connecting Marketplaces with Blockchain
After a large amount of interest from the community in response to ArcadierX’s feature in our Top Announcements of the Week article, we heard you loud and clear and got a chance to speak to the Singapore based team and discuss how their blockchain-enhanced platform will fill the trust void, and bring reputation scores and transparency to marketplaces.
Tell us about ArcadierX — what is the product?
ArcadierX is a project by Arcadier, a fast growing marketplace SaaS (Software-as-a-Service) provider headquartered in Singapore. ArcadierX aims bring its users a blockchain-enhanced marketplace platform which offers greater decentralisation and the ability to migrate trust scores, and even inventory across different marketplaces. There are six technology solution applications proposed in ArcadierX, of which five are blockchain-based and one is intelligent analytics.
ArcadierX’s five blockchain applications are: an inventory distribution system (Arcadier Hub), a distributed reputation trust system (Arcadier Trust), cryptocurrency payments traceability (ARCTX Payments), provenance and trade finance. Intelligent analytics will leverage machine learning to boost the understanding and predictability of shopping and buying decisions of our ecosystem users. These new capabilities will develop Arcadier into a intelligent eCommerce ecosystem that can even bring our ecosystem of marketplaces to other marketplaces beyond Arcadier.
What is the problem you are solving and who are the customers?
ArcadierX focuses on deploying marketplace solutions which could serve as high growth levers for both B2C and B2B eCommerce marketplaces globally, currently served by the parent company Arcadier.
Despite tremendous growth in online marketplaces in the B2C eCommerce market, many entrepreneurs and small, medium-sized businesses, aka “long tail” contributors, face significant challenges to competing against better-funded and larger online businesses. First, customer discovery and acquisition endeavours have become increasingly difficult and costly, as buyers struggle to decide who to trust in crowded marketplaces. Second, many smaller marketplaces and online sellers often lack the bargaining power required for inventory sourcing. This makes it incredibly difficult for them to achieve scale efficiently and effectively.
In the B2B eCommerce market, more and more marketplaces are emerging as businesses increasingly make procurement decisions via online channels. B2B eCommerce is projected to grow from US$7.7 trillion in 2017 to US$12 trillion in 2020. This represents a tremendous opportunity for Arcadier. For instance, Amazon Business, a Top-20 distributor with over $10 billion in gross merchandising volume, is set to grow at 20% month-over-month, while Alibaba traded more than US$11 billion on its platform. But despite the dominance of these eCommerce giants, marketplaces which occupy geographical or niche market segments are earning a considerable share of B2B eCommerce. Often, B2B marketplaces have to adopt more complex technology solutions like blockchain to achieve specific purposes, including supply chain procurement, provenance of inventories, and trade financing. ArcadierX is specifically designed to provide those blockchain-based marketplace solutions to address the increasing needs of our customers in both the B2C, as well as the B2B marketplaces.
What is a real world news event or example you would reference to show the importance of this project and its impact?
Project ArcadierX encompasses not one, but 6 elements, of which 5 of of the elements require blockchain initiatives. All of ArcadierX’s blockchain initiatives are driven by the feedback we’ve gotten from our customers.
With the rise of B2B Marketplaces and the importance of cross-border eCommerce, trust between buyers and sellers becomes even more critical. As a B2B buyer, you really need to know if you can trust your sellers given the volume and value of your purchases. In the case of cross-border transactions trust is an even more important factor to resolve. The use of blockchain will help resolve the issue of trust through immutable recorded and reviews of both buyers and sellers.
Arcadier, the parent company of Project ArcadierX, has also recently secured major marketplace businesses with government bodies which would be great use cases for blockchain in provenance and trade finance for example.
We currently have a project with the United Nations Project Office (UNOPS), to create a marketplace for doctors in developing nations to purchase drugs at lower prices. Our blockchain-based provenance and trade finance are well-suited for transactions on that marketplace.
We also have a project with the Cross River State Government in Nigeria, where we can deploy ArcadierX provenance and also our stable coins (ARCTX) to bring payment traceability and provenance in the sourcing of cocoa beans that bring chocolate to the world.
The fact that ArcadierX is a reverse-ICO, means that we can immediately leverage on our ecosystem of more than 7,000 marketplaces on Arcadier. Our user base of tens of thousand of users can benefit immediately from the Arcadier Hub and Arcadier Trust blockchain initiatives.
Lets talk tech. What stands out as impressive with what you are doing?
Our philosophy for Project ArcadierX isn’t about creating technologically sophisticated wizardry. We’re more about making sure that we use the best technology available to deliver successfully on our blockchain initiatives. Technology is is the tool that enables us to deliver practical, scalable, solutions that our ecosystem of users need to grow their businesses. Hence, to deliver these dApps, we are currently researching the best protocols out there that can provide the stability and technical prowess that is required to build Project ArcadierX. Examples of protocols we are talking to include Hyperledger Fabric, R3 Corda, Ethereum, EOS & Stellar. We believe that a useful blockchain initiative is one that is in widespread adoption. That’s what is important for the success of Project ArcadierX.
However, the challenge is that Project ArcadierX isn’t just one blockchain initiative but a suite of five blockchain initiatives on top of applying AI/ML to optimize the way data is used. That means that we must use the right technology that can deliver on all five blockchain initiative at the same time, and on the same platform depending on the needs of our users, current and new, small or big. Atomic swap capabilities, partially permissioned blockchains are some of the possibilities we’re exploring.
Tell us about your team and their experience
Dinuke Ranasinghe, Chief Executive Officer & Co-Founder
An industry leader with a passion for emerging technologies, Dinuke has over 20 years’ experience designing and launching innovative products in new markets.
Dinuke was one of the founding members of PayPal Asia Pacific, and led the team in strategic development and business expansion. He specialises in new product development and market expansion, utilising knowledge he gained studying engineering, global business, business and major programme management. Dinuke had also served as Head of Emerging Products & Technology Innovation as well as Head of eCommerce and Mobile for Visa Australia and New Zealand.
Dinuke holds degrees from the University of Oxford, Australian Graduate School of Management, and the University of Sydney.
Paul J Cascun, Chief Technology Officer & Co-Founder
Paul is an experienced technopreneur with over 25 years of experience in infrastructure and software design/development, taking on roles like Asia Pacific Head of IT for a worldwide designer, manufacturer and supplier of power industry devices. He is the founder of two other companies including X Information Technology, a tech-infrastructure consulting firm serving blue chip clients such as Deutsche Bank, Unilever and Vodafone. Paul led the design and implementation of Arcadier’s proprietary multi-vendor marketplace platform technology.
Paul holds a degree from the University of Technology, Sydney.
Kenneth Low, Chief Commercial Officer & Co-Founder
Kenneth is a highlight experienced strategist with over 18 years’ experience leading cross cultural teams in executive appointments including Asia Pacific Director of Alliances and Strategy for PayPal, and Asia Pacific Head of Strategy and Corporate Development for InterContinental Hotels Group.
He is a proven leader with expertise in strategy, corporate planning, business development, mergers and acquisitions, partnerships and alliance development. Kenneth is also financially trained and certified as a Chartered Accountant in Singapore and a Certified Practising Accountant in Australia.
Kenneth holds degrees from the University of Oxford and University of Western Australia.
Jiunn Shyong Tang, Group Financial Controller
Jiunn Shyong has 20 years’ experience in accounting, financial reporting and business processes, including Group Finance Manager of Inchem Holdings International, Senior Finance Director of Sherwin-Williams Paints and Business Leader in Accounting and Reporting of MasterCard. He focuses on optimising fund utilisation, enhancing financial reporting and improving corporate planning processes.
Jiunn Shyong is a Chartered Accountant in Singapore and holds an accountancy degree from the Nanyang Technological University.
June Boo, General Manager of North America & Head of Group Strategy
As a business consultant, June has been a Project Leader with Boston Consulting Group (Greater China), a Strategy Manager with PricewaterhouseCoopers (Singapore and New York) and Senior Consultant with BearingPoint Singapore. As a corporate leader, she has served in executive roles at InterContinental Hotels Group, including Head of Channels and Head of Strategy for the Asia, Middle East & Africa region. Her expertise resides in strategy, digital marketing, mergers and acquisitions, corporate planning, performance management and project management.
June is a Chartered Accountant in Singapore and holds an accountancy degree from the Nanyang Technological University.
Jerome Lasic, Lead Engineer
Specializing in .net development, Jerome has 16 years’ software development experience including design, architecture, documentation, and support.
Thien Nguyen, Software Development Lead
Thien has been with Arcadier since day one, designing and building our core system. He has a strong background in computer science, graduating with Honours in Engineering from The University of Technology, Vietnam, where he also researched and taught. He has held positions with Fairfax and Fujitsu.
Hailing (Henry) Tang, Integration Specialist
With a Masters in IT from the University of Technology, Sydney and 10 years’ airline and financial systems development experience, Henry specializes in system design, integration, development and maintenance.
Rachael Chin, Product Lead
Rachael is responsible for product strategy, design and planning for Arcadier products. Rachael’s expertise resides in identifying customers’ needs, monitoring competitors and market activity, and developing and implementing strategies to support the company’s value proposition.
Mak Hesson, Customer Service Lead
Hesson leads the customer service team and is responsible for customer satisfaction and success performance, where his strengths in using design-thinking methodologies to solve customer problems effectively and quickly has built customer loyalty and trust.
Evelina Ip, New Business Manager
Evelina has international experience in marketing, strategy and partnerships including roles in a Shanghai startup, a Singapore food and beverage concept house and at Hyatt Hotels Group in China and Indonesia.
What sets you apart from your competitors?
The industry recognises us as an innovative and forward-looking marketplace SaaS provider globally. We have a rigorous approach to researching and analysing emerging industry trends to define and anticipate what our customers need. That makes us the first reverse ICO as a marketplace platform provider to leverage blockchain technologies onto our core platform to address key challenges of both B2C and B2B marketplaces.
Arcadier has earned various accolades and nominations in recognition of our efforts in innovation and contribution to the eCommerce industry. These awards included Millennial 20/20 (Commerce Enabler), SME 100 (Fast Moving Companies), SITF (Best Innovative Company), OCBC & Business Times (Emerging Enterprise) and Growth Action Plan winner by Enterprise Singapore.
Our proven technology and customer-oriented approach have propelled us to one of the prominent brand names in the industry since the launch of our SaaS offering in 2016. We are now one of the fastest growing SaaS companies with more than 7,400 marketplaces created on our platform, with an average of 300–400 sign-ups every month. To-date, Arcadier has relied only on series-A funding and the upcoming ArcadierX ICO which will commence on 14 December 2018, starting with our private token sale in Q1 2019.
How did the idea come about? How did the team come together?
Project ArcadierX was driven by years of learning from the experience of managing Arcadier’s marketplace platform. We have actively listened to our customers’ feedback and observed both the failures and successes of various marketplaces created on our platform. Three years ago, the team identified a need for interconnectivity across eCommerce platforms to enable the sharing and portability of content, and authenticated reputation. This will significantly increase the ability of online businesses, regardless of size, to scale effectively and easily. However, existing internet protocols are not ready and suited to enable this transformation.The emergence of blockchain technologies made this vision possible. So in the middle of 2018, the team started Project ArcadierX, to utilise blockchain technology to offer decentralisation and extended network connectivity between marketplaces, so as to build trust between buyers and sellers.
ArcadierX’s management team is made up of five core members — three co-founders of Arcadier and two experienced professionals, all of whom have made their mark as senior executives in the corporate and/or consulting careers prior to joining ArcadierX. Seven years ago, the co-founders set up Arcadier, ArcadierX’s parent company, identified a global demand for a secure and reliable solution to enable individuals and organisations to create and manage their online marketplaces easily and affordably. Dinuke and Paul had been childhood friends, sharing a common passion for technology and product development, while Ken and Dinuke founded their friendship during their days at Paypal as senior executives, often debating at length on payment and eCommerce trends. Collectively, this management team has over 120 years of working experience in eCommerce, online payments, strategy, management consulting and financial management.
What is coming up next for the project that you are excited about? What should our readers know to look forward to next?
Unlike most other blockchain projects, ArcadierX is a series of 6 blockchain initiatives which will deliver a suite of blockchain initiatives imperative to addressing the needs of both B2C and B2B marketplaces for the next few years as marketplace emerges as a dominant business model in the eCommerce industry.
With the two Arcadier Hub and Trust as the foundation of our blockchain solutions, our users can access a global hub of curated inventory supported by authenticated ratings and reviews in a decentralised manner. We invite you to follow our progress via ArcadierX Telegram as we roll out over the next 2–3 years our blockchain dApps, namely Arcadier Hub, Arcadier Trust, Stable coin ARCTX, Provenance, Trade Finance. With the range of DApps proposed, ArcadierX will address the needs of eCommerce within and outside of Arcadier ecosystem in an integrated manner unlike any other.
What about BitcoinTalk — What role does it play in crypto and in your marketing strategy?
BitcoinTalk is an integral part of our marketing strategy. You can find a link to it from our ArcadierX.io website on the first panel. We have a feature page on BitcoinTalk to answer any technical questions the crypto community might have about our project. We have garnered a lot of interest in the project in a very short time on BitcoinTalk and we will continue updating the crypto community on this platform as our project progresses. For any ICO or blockchain project to be successful, a presence in BitcoinTalk is critical.
Join ArcadierX on our official channels for the latest updates!
♦️ Telegram: https://t.me/ArcadierX
♦️ Reddit — https://www.reddit.com/r/ArcadierX/
♦️ Bitcointalk — https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=5077737.0
♦️ Medium — https://medium.com/@ArcadierX