Block Array (ARY), which we analysed here, has announced their first strategic partnership – with First View Financial.
First View Financial operates as a Payment Rails and Program Administer, for example for BitPay, an existing crypto-to-fiat debit card, as well as working with Visa and MasterCard and other traditional banking services. First View Financial has an additional connection to Block Array in the form of Block Array’s COO, Will Jones. Jones is also Vice President at Jones Management Service, which is involved in the consumer financial industry, with one of their holdings being First View Financial. This shows Jones’ business connections coming in useful for the company, and gives him a personal incentive to see the partnership be beneficial for all parties.
A partnership with a company with these kinds of financial inroads may appear strange for a logistics and trucking project such as Block Array at first glance, but it comes with its unique perks. Being able to connect traditional banking services into the Block Array trucking and logistics network could make for some interesting use-cases and extensions to the base services the team plans to offer. In summary, these are the extra services the team will be able to offer as a result of this partnership:
- Wire Transfers
- ACH Transfer
- Debit Card Loading
- OTC Exchange
- KYC & AML Management
- Network settlement
- Load existing corporate debit/pre-paid cards or create new ones
Now that crypto-to-dollar, dollar-to-crypto, on-chain USD payments, and some other functions are going to be made possible, it opens up a multitude of avenues to extend the uses of the platform:
- All pick ups can be scheduled and paid for on the Block Array network.
- Truckers are generally given fuel cards by their employers to keep them trucking along. Using Electronic Logging Device (ELD) data (a primary function of Block Array), a smart contract can automatically deposit a certain amount of money onto a trucker’s fuel card after a predetermined distance has been driven or they reach a certain destination.
- Driver payroll can be done entirely on the Block Array platform.
- Truckers at times spend long stretches away from home, and may have families back home who rely on them financially. To make this process easier, they could set up repeating automated payments to be made at a predetermined time.
- One of the issues we mentioned in our initial Block Array analysis, was that companies and truckers may have issues with getting hold of the ARY tokens, as they have to go through the process of setting themselves up on crypto exchanges and learning the basics of cryptocurrency – something they may have absolutely no desire or time to do. With this partnership, users could buy directly on FreightRelay.com (one of Block Array’s under-construction web portals, which we covered here), and avoid exchanges entirely.
This is a big one, and something that is rather unique in the trucking space. Detention payouts occur when a trucker has to wait to make a delivery or pickup due to a third party, which can cause them to be further delayed down the line, potentially losing them money or even contracts. These payouts are supposed to cover the driver for any inconvenience caused; however, they can take several weeks to be processed, in which time the driver may have already been in need of the money, and often drivers don’t pursue them at all due to how difficult it can be to make the claims.
Block Array could offer to buy the detention claim from a trucker for 70 cents on the dollar (the number given by the Block Array team), which would allow them to pay the trucker this 70% on day 1 of the claim being initiated, and when the payment is finalised down the line, the company keeps the remaining 30%. Given how one of Block Array’s targets is to make sure drivers have tangible proof of the delays they incurred (with their blockchain tracking), and how many detention payouts are not pursued by drivers in the first place, this combination will allow for both a greater amount of drivers receiving their payouts (or the majority percentage on day 1), as well as Block Array taking a cut from what could be a substantial revenue stream. It is estimated that detention situations cut truck driver pay by between $1.1 billion and $1.3 billion annually, an annual pay loss of between $1,281 and $1,534 per driver.
This could also open up the possibility for partnerships with law firms – or selling the claims on to them – in cases where the liable party is refusing to make the payment.
How the ARY token will be used in this case has not been made clear yet, though it could be used as a payment option for truckers, and at the very least this service is likely to attract more truckers to the Block Array ecosystem for the added value it provides them.
Generally, having the ability for the entire operations to be tracked, paid, and processed via the Block Array networks should lead to businesses having a major saving in terms of time, as well as giving them the ability to streamline their processes as they don’t have to leave the Block Array ecosystem at any point.
Below are all the options this partnership enables for the project, straight from the team’s Medium post on the matter:
- Creating token-based rewards systems
- Smart Contract-based payment triggers (i.e. If This, Then That)
- Unit-of-Account fungible Tokens (i.e. on-chain U.S. Dollars)
- Crypto-to-Dollar exchanges (BTC/ETH)
- Dollar-to-Crypto exchanges (BTC/ETH/ARY)
- Financial Smart Contracts such as Escrow or Multi-Sig
- Load existing or create new debit/pre-paid cards for businesses
- Have Smart Contracts trigger ACH, Wire Transfer or Bank Deposit
Here are some direct benefits for Logistics companies:
- Ability to load existing debit/pre-paid cards (e.g. Fuel Cards)
- Invoice Factoring Services
- Payroll Services (e.g. Driver Payroll)
- Instant Deposits (same-day fund availability in bank account)
- Detention Factoring Service (Unique to Freight Relay)
- Ability for entire shipment transaction and tracking to occur on 1 platform
The teams are planning a joint press release regarding the partnership announcement on Monday or Tuesday (14th or 15th May), so more information may come to light then.