Five retailers that are all about the blockchain right now

1.) Ikea 

Ikea’s R&D laboratory Space10 has teamed up with blockchain ventures Bloc and Blocktech and architects SachsNottveit to develop a prototype clean energy microgrid that could enable communities to be self-sufficient for their electricity supply.

“Centralised energy systems are often too slow and economically inadequate to reach the billion people who remain locked in energy poverty,” says Bas Van De Poel, Creative Director at Space10. “The SolarVille project showcases that, when working in tandem, technologies such as solar panels, micro-grids and blockchain open new opportunities: off-grid systems allowing people to leapfrog traditional grid electricity.”

Ikea already sells solar panels and battery storage systems and SolarVille could be a sign that the furniture retailer is looking to expand this side of its business. “We are curious and always looking for innovative ideas that can help more people live a better life within the limits of the planet,” comments Torbjörn Lööf, CEO at Inter Ikea Group.

“Space10 gives us new perspectives, discovering new opportunities within many different areas. It will be very interesting to learn how this combination of new technology and solar energy solutions can make lives better for many people.”

2.) JD.com 

Chinese e-commerce giant JD.com has launched JD Chain, a blockchain framework for businesses.

This follows on from a blockchain technology open platform, which enables businesses to leverage pre-built APIs. The new addition means that companies can now build their own solutions, starting from the underlying architecture and without relying on pre-built APIs. This will be complemented by the JD Chain Open Source Community, which aims to promote greater discussions and pooling of resources among blockchain developers and enterprise users.

“JD has long been a trailblazer in pushing the boundaries of blockchain’s potential to transform global commerce,” says Xinlei Zhai, Head of Blockchain at…

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