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De Beers Hires Tech Exec to Lead Blockchain

Aug 16, 2018 8:42 AM   By Rapaport News
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RAPAPORT... Tracr, De Beers’ blockchain platform, has appointed technology executive Jim Duffy to run the next phase of the project’s development.

Duffy (pictured) joins Tracr as general manager just as the platform is starting to grow in scale, the De Beers operation said Thursday. More than $100 million worth of rough diamonds have gone onto the company’s blockchain since the launch of the pilot in January 2018, it said.

Before the move, Duffy led several technology start-ups, and has worked for large global technology companies, as well as in the financial sector. He will run the operational and commercial aspects of the Tracr venture, take charge of the strategy for making it available to the industry, and manage its interactions with other organizations involved in the project.

“Jim’s skills and experiences are the perfect fit for realizing the vision we have for Tracr — a unique digital platform that will enhance long-term sustainability and deliver a range of benefits for the whole diamond industry,” said Neil Ventura, De Beers’ executive vice president for strategy and innovation.

De Beers launched the idea of a blockchain for the diamond sector last year, presenting it as a way to provide mine-to-customer traceability for the entire industry. In the coming months, Tracr will focus on bringing new strategic partners into the pilot program, as well as making use of what the company has already learned from the test phase. Five diamond manufacturers are currently involved in the pilot alongside US retailer Signet Jewelers.
Tags: Blockchain, De Beers, Jim D, Neil Ventura, Rapaport News, Signet Jewelers, technology, traceability, Tracr
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