Crunchfish's intelligent solutions for financial inclusion

In a world increasingly dependent on digital payments, a solution is required that also works offline. Midroc Invest's portfolio company Crunchfish has developed a digital wallet that can match escalating transaction volumes.

In Sweden, cash is more or less disappearing. In 10 years, the proportion of people paying with cash has dropped from around 40 % to below 10 %. The cashless society has many advantages but is vulnerable because it requires a stable internet connection.

In the Invest business area, Midroc invests in groundbreaking technologies with great commercial potential. One example is the technology company Crunchfish, which has several innovative ideas – including a system for digital payments offline.

– Crunchfish's solution is based on making the features of the cash available in digital format. It is necessary to have a complement to today's network-dependent payment solutions to achieve a robust financial infrastructure, says Joachim Samuelsson, CEO of Crunchfish.

The pandemic drives digitalization

In many countries, large amounts of cash are in circulation. But cash management carries the risk of spreading infection and the pandemic is now driving digital payments. In large parts of the world, however, digital payments often fail, either because of poor connectivity or because banks' servers cannot cope with the load. In India, for example, a lot of payments fail.

Many central banks are exploring the possibility of issuing digital banknotes as a complement to cash, and the Swedish Riksbank is running a pilot project for an e-krona (a digital central bank currency).

– But a digital central bank currency will not work offline and anonymously in the same way as cash. It is the only payment method that always works and never compromises your personal privacy. The important thing is not to digitalize cash itself, but to make the features of the cash in digital format work offline.

Two-step solution

Crunchfish’s Digital Cash wallet makes payment in two separate steps. First with direct clearing offline at the payment moment and later when online connection and bank servers become available, money is moved between accounts.

– It acts as a digital wallet either on your smartphone or cards. You reserve money from your bank account to the wallet that is always available.

The system also makes it possible to link different payment services, so that you can pay, for example, in another country with Swish. The possibilities for the technology are enormous, according to Samuelsson, who believes in a breakthrough in Sweden and India during 2021.

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In a short period of time, carbon capture and storage has emerged as one of the most important measures to rapidly reduce global CO² emissions. If the technology were to be installed at 27 of the largest point emissions in Sweden, the country's carbon dioxide emissions would be reduced by 50 %.

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