BMW Reportedly Inks Partnership with UK Blockchain Startup for Cobalt Mapping

Following BMW’s recently closed deal with Chinese Blockchain supply firm VEChain, the German-based automobile manufacturing company has reportedly inked a second partnership with UK-based Blockchain startup Circulor to track BMW’s cobalt utilization.

In an effort to prove that the automotive giant only utilizes ethical cobalt for its electric vehicles batteries, BMW has purportedly partnered with Circulor, a London based company to integrate Blockchain technology in BMW’s transaction-recording system.    

According to Circulor CEO Douglas Johnson-Poensgen, the firm’s collaboration with BMW aims to ensure that BMW’s electric automotive only contains “clean” cobalt, as reported by Reuters.

As Reuters underscored, roughly two-thirds of the world’s Cobalt supplies are mined from the Democratic Republic of Congo, one-fifth of which are unregulated.

The Circulor CEO suggested with Reuters that the automaker’s supply chain of cobalt is assumed to be clean as it was predominantly outsourced from Australia and Canada jurisdictions, as well as industrial productions in Congo.

As the Circulor CEO stressed:

“We believe it makes economic sense to start with sources that aren’t a problem.

In reference with Circulor’s pilot venture with BMW, Johnson-Poensgen added that:

“Once the system is proven and operating at scale, one can tackle the harder use cases like artisanal mines.”

Presently, there has not been any further disclosed announcements following Circulor’s statements regarding its partnership with BMW.

As it would appear, BMW and Circulor’s supposed partnership would not be the first time the automotive industry has explored the integration of Blockchain technology for system solutions, particularly in Germany where major global automobile companies including Mercedes Benz have pivoted to Blockchain when it previously introduced a new cryptocurrency, MobiCoin.

Similarly in February, German automobile manufacturer Porsche, in partnership with Berlin-based startup XAIN, has also successfully integrated Blockchain technology.