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Peppermint invests in blockchain technology against product counterfeiting

Managing Director Baumbach: "We are convinced of the high potential of the unique digital solution and are again acting as lead investor in the current financing round."

Making sure products are counterfeit-proof with a green tick on them and an app. This is guaranteed by a completely new digital application developed by the start-up authentic.network based on blockchain. The young company from Chemnitz in Saxony can now continue to grow after Peppermint Holding GmbH and Jentzsch Investment GmbH invested another 2.6 million euros.

Marcus Baumbach, managing director and shareholder of Peppermint, justifies the financial commitment with the great demand that exists worldwide for digital solutions against counterfeiting: "authentic.network GmbH has developed a unique counterfeit protection of products and documents. A physical code is connected to its digital twin using blockchain, which ensures authenticity while allowing opportunities for a completely new type of interaction with end customers. Peppermint is convinced of the high potential of this unique digital marketplace and is again acting as lead investor in the current funding round."

The CEO and founder of authetic.network, Frank Theeg, announced that he will use the fresh capital to drive the internationalization of his company and increase the number of employees fivefold from 10 to 50. The first international branch is to be opened this year in Abidjan (Ivory Coast) in West Africa. End consumers will be able to check the authenticity of products and documents in seconds using an app. Behind a printed green tick is an invisible code that guarantees the authenticity of the product. Unlike the barcodes and QR codes currently used as counterfeit protection, the Authentic Key cannot be copied.

The basis of the technology is blockchain, a method for the encrypted chaining of data records on the Internet. "Our technology can be used without any great installation effort or technical requirements, so the spectrum of possible applications is enormous," says  authentic.network founder Theeg. For example, the authenticity of medicine packaging, admission tickets, ID cards and documents can be protected. Luxury and consumer goods as well as goods on sales platforms can also be protected against counterfeiting with the technology.

Product counterfeiting causes damage of up to 60 billion euros a year in the EU alone and destroys almost 470,000 jobs. In West Africa, the authentic.network app will help put a stop to counterfeit medicines. Every year, thousands of people there die from counterfeit malaria preparations. So the app from Chemnitz can also save lives worldwide.

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