An interview with EdenChain’s CEO James Ahn was published in EDAILY on June 18. The interview with EDAILY took place on 17th and it covered not only the use and development of blockchain technology, but also the introduction of EdenChain and Hello Eden, EdenChain’s business direction and future plans.
EDAILY is known as Korea’s largest comprehensive economic information service company, providing domestic and foreign economic news and financial information.
Below is the translated interview.
-You’ve developed a unique third-generation blockchain called EdenChain. Please introduce the features of EdenChain.
△There are three main features. First of all, it’s a permissioned blockchain. Unlike Bitcoin and Ethereum, which can be accessed by anyone with internet and a personal computer, it requires permission to join the network. The operating body can be a company, foundation, committee, or any other organization. Companies want to control business contents and policies directly and do not want the information to be disclosed. This is not acceptable for enterprises.
Secondly, because EdenChain technology concentrates on the enterprise users, our focus is on providing services based on the technology that is verified, stable, EDAILFFDSand easy to use without using fancy technology or new algorithms. Applying a new technology with the combination of proven technologies, we provide the solid technology that companies actually can use and apply.
Lastly, our API is simple and easy to use. There is no use in technology if it is difficult for companies to use or to find developers. The users can use our API after one or two weeks of training.
-Eden Partners is the enterprise that focuses on developing technologies rather than providing blockchain services. Then can we say Eden Partners as the blockchain platform enterprise?
△We can say it is B2B platform enterprise. Platform business is very hard though. There were many companies that tried platform business but did not really succeed such as Tizen. We need a networking. We cannot create an ecosystem only by ourselves. We need to attract many enterprises, to educate the users, and marketing. That is why we have a sub-project called Hello Eden. Blockchain is a database system. Nothing will change if we just change the database system only. If we put the concept of coin as an incentive, there can be a new business model that we could not think of before. Profit sharing is what is important at the end. Because of the coin, there is a way to share the profit fairly and transparently between a platform enterprise, enterprises that use the platform, and content creators. Hello Eden will help the enterprises that fit this business model and fully engage even to the reverse ICO.
-You have already raised funds through ICO. What was the size of the fund and how did the investors respond?
△Eden team raised around 24 billion won. We considered thoroughly and took much time to decide how much fund from which investors to take in. So we set a principle of regional distribution. We have carefully selected investors by dividing them into different regions: Asia, Europe and Australia, the foothold to expand our business. Because our goal was not the ICO itself but doing business after it, our focus was finding right partners, not just raising capital. In the end, ICO has been a good marketing tool and a means of getting good partners.
-How do you plan your overseas business?
△I thought it would be better to do business in the global market than to just stick to the domestic market. After the ICO I feel more certain now. In the past, I worked in a field of cloud and machine running, but I was not confident about getting ahead in the overseas market. Whereas with blockchain, we can be a key player in the industry because our starting point is about the same with overseas players. I do not want to miss this great opportunity that blockchain gave me. I want to have good results by improving the quality of the business. The goal is to become a global player, not a domestic player.
– Blockchain is spreading like a new trend. What would be the criteria for the industries to decide whether or not it is appropriate to apply the blockchain technology?
△First of all, the industry that could not execute its business model previously because of the lack of technology would be appropriate. Supply chain can be a starting point. Also, the industry that carries data technology would have a good model with blockchain. The data should not be manipulated or monopolized. IoT related businesses are good. IoT is not possible without a blockchain technology. Thirdly, it should be able to innovate the previous business model. It is better if the business can break the monopolized system of the market by achieving technological innovation. There is no need to change a well-structured business system into a blockchain system if it has been working well.
-The fastest areas to adopt and take advantage of blockchain technology are finance, logistics and medical industries. What do you think about this?
△Personally I do not think it will be easy. If people want to utilize the blockchain technology in these industries, the size of transaction should not be large. It is not easy to apply the blockchain technology to financial transactions because of the scalability issues, which have not been solved and verified yet. It might be possible to apply it in the future but not right now. It is also difficult to process the transaction in real time. Logistics may not be easy due to regulatory problems. There is certainly a reason why it is the way it is for the time-consuming field that has a complex structure such as logistics. In other words, they may not have been optimized because of the regulations, legal issues, and procedural differences between countries.
-What are the future business plans of Eden Partners?
△It is not a good time to talk about the future businesses. I have no time to think of anything other than the current project that is going on right now. Big players such as Apple, Google and Amazon have not entered the market yet because the market is not large enough. However, when the market grows, they will surely come in. When I visited Facebook headquarters personally, I heard that they were preparing blockchain business internally. Since big players will come in next year or two, it is urgent to set up a strategy and find a way to survive by competing with them.
-How and in what ways should the government support blockchain industry for its development and growth?
△The government should steer the right direction. That’s the key point. The blockchain itself is an explosive technology. There can be both light and shade. However, the government should focus on the positive side, encourage its development, and give positive messages. Since it is a technology that needs to be developed and grow, after enough development, it is by then, we need to think about the regulations and policies as the next step. We need to think about how to regulate it after blockchain industry’s growth to reduce side effects. In fact, there have been only a few industries in which Korea has led the world or where the whole nation has shown passion. The blockchain is different. There is a high level of public interest and is worth the challenge, competing with global companies. Rather, Korea is one of the leading countries. It is important to make good use of this. This allows the government to attract foreign companies to Korea, foster employment and industry, and accumulate capital. In addition, we must create an atmosphere that can tolerate failure and avoid short-sightedness.