News Supply chain

Cargill backed blockchain startup Covantis to add Marubeni as investor


Japanese conglomerate Marubeni will invest in Switzerland’s Covantis, a blockchain startup founded by the world’s leading agribusiness firms, ADM, Bunge, Cargill, COFCO Corporation, Louis Dreyfus Company and Viterra (formerly Glencore Agriculture). The platform aims to improve efficiency and transparency in post-trade execution for the bulk agricultural commodity sector.

“International bulk commodities trading, including grain & oilseed, requires complicated business workflows including preparing, exchanging, and confirming many physical documents like contracts or certificates between multiple parties throughout the supply chain from supplier to buyer,” said Mr Terakawa, CEO of CEO of Food, Agriculture & Chemicals at Marubeni.

“The issue at stake is to improve efficiency, accuracy, and transparency in the industry and we are proud to participate in the initiative which provides these solutions.

Assuming the transaction closes, Marubeni will have an equal share with the founding firms.

The group started to come together as a consortium in 2018, incorporated as Covantis in March 2020, just as COVID made an impact, and went into production this February with its first use case for bulk corn and soybean exports from Brazil. At that stage, participants were the founding firms but this quickly expanded to 18 clients by May. Marubeni was amongst that round of new users alongside major importers and exporters such as ALX, Amaggi, CHS, Coamo, C&D, Enerfo, Gavilon, Nova Agri, and Olam International. 

Now there are 24 customers and over 80 legal entities using the platform.

The post-trade solution uses enterprise blockchain ConsenSys Quorum, with ConsenSys and Cognizant as technology partners alongside Azure Cloud.