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Back to the future: Why VERIWINE is old-fashioned modern.

Updated: Feb 6, 2023

You have probably landed here because you are interested in wine and not in software. Nevertheless, we will allow ourselves a small technical digression here. It may be boring, but it is worthwhile. Because this way we can show you why our solution brings something to the whole wine world.

Wine is the Gallic village in the food industry. The latter is dominated by just shy of a dozen of giant corporations. This also applies to submarkets such as beer or spirits. Anheuser-Busch InBev has a beer output of 567 million hectolitres*, Diageo records an annual turnover of 11.75 billion British pounds**.

In the wine industry - thank God or Bacchus - there is no supplier with such power. On the contrary: it is made of small and micro vendors. Did you know that there are over one million winegrowers in Italy?

This brings great advantages such as diversity, local offers, and functioning competition, but also challenges. One of these relates to the difficulty in exchanging knowledge, and discussed in depth in this article.

Today we would like to explain what our software solution has to do with the specifics of this market and why we don't want to dominate it (and probably couldn't if we wanted to).

What types of software are there?

Going back in history, there were centralised applications that run through a single system (or at least look like they do). A tool like MS Office is a good example of this. Interestingly, however, most new providers are also trying to centralise their software. The advantage from the provider's point of view is clear, of course: you retain power and control. From a certain number of users on, the profits just kept on coming in.

Later, with the internet, decentralised or distributed applications were added. Peer-to-peer systems (P2P) became very popular early on. They emerged at the end of the 1990s and quickly gained worldwide fame because countless people exchanged MP3 music files via them (mostly not legally though...). The technology behind it was revolutionary, but because the applications were problematic from a legal perspective, they quickly went under again.

P2P had other weak points. Who takes care of the maintenance and expansion of a system? Due to these issues, the software world soon became more centralised again.

Then came the blockchain

It took almost two decades for blockchain applications to come onto the market "in series". They use a similar principle that can be well explained using e-banking as an example. Instead of a central provider (Bank X) giving you access to a database (ultimately, your account is nothing else than a database), the database (e.g. the best-known cryptocurrency Bitcoin) is now decentralised. Every user has a copy of all the data, it is visible and yet to a large extent anonymous on the network.

Conceptually, we find this approach exciting. And perfectly suited to the wine industry. This is because we believe that only a solution that distributes power can offer added value to all. Don't worry, this has nothing to do with copyright infringements and highly speculative currencies, but with the underlying technology.

We are bringing a multi-party solution to the market. All participants (the winemaker, the importer, the wine merchant, the Barolo lover) can exchange data directly with each other and have access to information (Is this wine real? Has it always been stored correctly? By when should I drink it?), direct contact possibilities and influences. Without us as suppliers having the power over it.

We are not the AirBnB of the wine industry

The 2010s were the decade of software platforms. AirBnB and Uber, the most famous examples, completely transformed huge industries, just as the iPod had previously changed the music industry.

Unfortunately, not only for the better. Thanks to scaling effects, certain providers gained huge market power, which they naturally exploited. This has sometimes had unwanted consequences, for example, the gentrification of entire inner cities or the problem that taxi drivers, whose wages were already not particularly high, now earn even less.

We want to clearly distinguish ourselves from this. We do not want to accumulate as much power as possible and try to participate in every transaction in the market. On one hand, this is illusory and on the other, it would mean that we would have to make our software more complicated, more elaborate, and more error-prone. We do not want that.

Our business model

We try to combine the advantages of a centralised system (stability, continuous improvement, responsibility) with those of an open P2P network (democratisation, i.e. power and influence for all participants).

VERIWINE is a kind of infrastructure for the wine industry. We enable winemakers to protect their wines from counterfeiting and thus strengthen their brand. We help importers to make their processes more efficient and their marketing more targeted. Thanks to us, wine lovers can find wines they might also like or have the opportunity to give winemakers direct feedback on a wine.

In return, we charge fees that enable us to maintain the software, provide support, and continuously expand our offer. Later, when we want to reach as many end customers as possible, we also plan to expand our marketing.

But we leave all the rest to the individual players in the wine industry. That means you. The possibilities are endless.

Do you have an idea?

VERIWINE enables innovative people in the industry to find a market - from sowing to serving. Our platform can be used to share knowledge about smart farming as well as theory through wine courses, an evening in a restaurant with a special wine pairing, or other wine experiences.

Precisely because we are not the central supplier, there are few limits, except perhaps your imagination. Or to put it another way: the Gallic village in the food industry will not be so easily conquered in the future. It does have a magic potion. Would you like a sip of it too? Then sign up here.

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