Tilkal and BTU (Part. 2) – Cryptocurrencies

b-hub for europe

The inauguration of the Blockchain For Europe B-hub took place last February. TheCointribune had covered the subject for you! As a reminder, the B-hub For Europe initiative aims to facilitate the connection between blockchain projects and traditional players. In addition, B-hub aims to be a point of contact for companies wishing to train in the world of decentralized. The event being held in France, 8 French blockchain startups were invited to present their project. Among these, 5 projects agreed to take part in the interview. Thanks to them!

This article follows a first part that I urge you to read if not already done! In this second part, you will be able to discover the portraits of Tilkal with Matthieu Hug and of BTU with Vidal Chriqui.

Tilkal with Matthieu Hug

Logo of the startup Tilkal, present at the B-hub For Europe

We often hear about the issue of traceability. Can you give us a summary and tell us about the objective of Tilkal?

With 25 years of seniority each in IT in different positions Joseph Azar, Sébastien Gaïde and I founded Tilkal 3 years ago.

Our job is to provide a software infrastructure to allow traceability end to end of an industrialist’s supply chain, from its upstream to its downstream. Our solution is now used by large groups such as Casino and Danone.

We looked at this topic for one simple reason: industries lose visibility and therefore control on how their supply chains work.

Today the illicit trade, represents afterOrganisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) around $ 2 trillion in business each year. The illicit trade is today the equivalent of the GDP of Spain!

In 2016 in the European Union, 6.8% of imported products – or 1 in 15 products – are counterfeits, this number is constantly increasing and has doubled since 2013. The World Economic Forum recently highlighted a study by the American NGO Oceana, indicating that 33% of the labels of fish sold on the American territory are false!

This phenomenon is explained by the growth of our production chains and their fragmentation. Subcontracting volumes also exploded and it’s particularly noticeable in transportation.

Despite this evolution in demand, IT systems have not evolved and therefore can no longer respond as they should. They basically only follow the 2 steps closest to the chain, while the chain can consist of 15 or more steps. What happens beyond the first two stages? It is vague and it is precisely the cause of the development of illegal trade. Knowing the real and complete origin of a product is a challenge today, it is in practice not possible in the vast majority of cases!

The danger for the consumer is very real, especially in the case of defective products. During a recall of a defective product on the shelf it sometimes takes several months to be certain that 100% of the products have been removed, as we have seen in recent cases in France on infant products. Typically this delay is partly explained by the impossibility of knowing precisely the place of storage and sale of the products corresponding to a given batch.

At Tilkal we help manufacturers to organize precise traceability all along their supply chain ; we provide an industrialist with all of the tools to capture data across their entire chain. He can then analyze these, improve operation, detect any malfunctions and communicate with more transparency.

So you do not verify the veracity of the information transmitted to you?

We capture information which in essence are statements; we are not trying to pre-qualify their veracity. In fact I don’t think it would make much sense. When you capture data from the real world, there are bound to be errors: a broken sensor, a data entry error, fraud, whatever the reason. And the reality of supply chains is that it happens, and that when faced with a single data point it is often impossible to deduce the right information. The reasonable approach is to analyze the consistency of a set of data from various sources to detect anomalies, in short use the data to deduce information. To do this you need reliable data, whose origin can be guaranteed and whose content is fixed. This is the essential element that the blockchain brings : the immutability of data, which makes it possible to analyze it, and of course upstream to make everyone responsible for what they say.

We do exactly that: we use the declared data to reconstruct an image of the supply chain, which we analyze to see its intrinsic coherence, in relation to specifications or in relation to objectives. Thus we are able to alert our customers in the event of inconsistent or fraudulent results. To my knowledge, only a systemic approach of this type (collection -> analysis -> correction) can provide a lasting answer to the question of the veracity of the data.

Simple curiosity, but where does this name come from?

It is a reference to an unbreakable metal that is found in one of the works of Tolkien. We put in place the necessary elements so that the industrial supply chain is as reliable as it is solid.

How does Tilkal work with Casino and its other customers?

Casino has a node in our ecosystem, but each of the cooperatives providing data to Casino also has a node. Everyone has the same level of control, which prevents an actor from becoming too powerful to tamper with the data for it to go its way.

This is a very important point: blockchain technology has the potential for data immutability; but if an actor has all the nodes in a network, then the data is no longer immutable. For this actor, modifying the data is trivial. In fact, it is the structure of the network, its real character, distributed to actors without collusion, which makes it possible to obtain immutability. Concretely, if you don’t have a knot, you have no control or guarantee over what’s going on, it’s as simple as that.

How can I as a consumer have access to product information?

The simplest access point for the consumer is QR code directly on a product. Many companies do this today, but this QR code refers only to the batch of the product. With Danone, we offer a more detailed and precise vision of the thing, because all the units of a product have a unique QR code (in fact even two), that is to say that they are “serialized”. The volume of data to be managed is therefore… This protection is nevertheless necessary on risky products such as infant milk for the Asian market. The boxes containing the products also have a datamatrix unique and the pallets containing the boxes another yet different.

We therefore have a triple serialization to be able to trace the product on 3 scales of sizes, and manage the container / content relationships and their evolution along the supply chain. This allows us to be very precise, even if it means having a lot of data when necessary.

How many products are currently using your solution?

Today around twenty product lines use our solutions, the equivalent of 10 million per year. Once the deployment with Danone is complete, we will be more like 100 million a year.

As Jacques Delors said: “The consumer society has privileged having at the expense of being.”

To restore importance to being, it is important to know what we are buying because it contributes to the world we create. Let’s take a hazelnut spread that our little blond heads love. Few people know that the majority of hazelnuts come from Turkey. Unfortunately, even fewer people are aware that child labor or semi-slavery is common on farms. Beyond this specific case, slavery is a modern scourge that affects many common raw materials: roughly 200 million people worldwide, 73 million children.

The same goes for transparency as for the rest: when it is blurred, there is a wolf. When an olive oil says “EU or non-EU origin“You’ve got a good chance that it’s one of the 50% fraudulent olive oil exposed a few months ago by the DGCCRF. The transparency allowed by platforms like Tilkal will allow you to choose your products with full knowledge and awareness.

Tilkal’s vision in 3 words?

  1. Transparency
  2. Commitment
  3. Trust

Do you think we are behind in the digital sector in France?

Yes, without a doubt, but this delay is not for me at the French level but at the European level.

We have lost too many technological battles in the past. On the current battle of traceability, we absolutely must not lose, it is a question of our economy but above all of our health ! If tomorrow, all the data for the various food products will pass through a single actor American or Chinese, what will be the industrial consequences? What about the use of this data for competitive analysis of our industries? What about blocking such a traceability system to retaliate against Europe? European players must emerge to strike a balance, and we hope to be part of it in the long term.

Do you personally own cryptocurrencies?

No, speculation is bothering me deeply so I don’t have one.

When you have vacancies, how do you recruit?

We try to detect people frozen in their current knowledge, who do not want to learn for .. do not select them. Others are welcome, no one has a lot of science. Motivation, reliability and adaptability, but also the desire to “do” are more important than past experiences for us.

Which Blockchain project is particularly important to you?

BTU protocol, a project that I like very much, because it is one of the very few projects that have issued a token with a real value proposition. Their currency has a meaning, a clear economic flow and an end goal. Hat!

Portrait of Matthieu Hug, CEO of Tilkal
Matthieu Hug, CEO of Tilkal

Thanks to Matthieu Hug for agreeing to answer my questions! If you are ever interested in the project, you can always go to their website.

BTU with Vidal Chriqui

BTU Protocol announces the launch of its stablecoin, the bDAI ...

How would you explain the project to a child?

Use BTU Protocol, it’s getting better rates while earning cryptocurrencies in everyday purchases.

BTU Protocol 3 words?

  1. Purchasing
  2. Power
  3. Squared

The most attentive will see here an allusion to the famous “Poison Squared Rat”Of Warren Buffet.

What do you think of France’s position in the Blockchain sector?

France has a head start and regulatory clarity, however, large accounts have not yet realized the opportunities for value creation possible with the blockchain.

Do you personally own cryptocurrencies?

I’m not used to communicating on this subject, what interests me in cryptocurrencies is usage.

When you have vacancies, how do you recruit?

For technical profiles, we use technical tests and what interests us is the ability to reason and learn. It should be noted that blockchain is only part of the overall solution, not all of our engineers work directly on “blockchain” modules.

For non-technical profiles, we train them in the benefits of blockchain and they discover all the subtleties on the fly.

Which Blockchain project is particularly important to you?

I love the project MakerDAO and the open innovation it brings to the ecosystem. It is this fascination for this project that led us to create with their support the stable corner bDAI, the variant of the stable coin DAI which ships BTU rewards.

Vidal Chriqui the CEO of the company BTU Protocol which uses the blockchain to restore purchasing power to consumers
Vidal Chriqui, CEO of BTU

Thanks to Vidal Chriqui for agreeing to answer my questions! If you are ever interested in the project, you can always go to their website.

We have come to the end of the 5 portraits of French projects using the blockchain to solve social problems! The B-Hub Blockchain For Europe being held in Paris for this edition, it was the perfect opportunity to highlight French companies!

I hope you enjoyed this two part interview series. If so, do not hesitate to relay the article on your favorite social networks!


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