Interested in technology, Quah Zheng Wei gave up his career as a chartered accountant to teach himself how to code. But it was his experience as an accountant that led to his interest in the blockchain and how it can be used to verify documents. “What intrigued me was the technology’s ability to enable real-time authentication,” Quah told australiabusinessblog.com. “That was astounding, because essentially accountants are there to match certain transactions and make sure everything matches up. When I realized that technology can completely displace that activity, I was intrigued.”
Co-founded by Quah in 2019 to securely verify documents, based in Singapore Accredit today announced it has raised $7 million in Series A funding co-led by iGlobe Partners and SIG Venture Capital with participation from returning investors Pavilion Capital and Qualgro. So far, it has processed 12 million verifications on 2 million issued documents and served 600 users.
Accreditify started by working with educational organizations to prevent the use of fake diplomas and certificates. After that, it started expanding into other use cases, including business registries and healthcare.
For example, during the height of the pandemic, Accredify partnered with the Department of Manpower and the Department of Health to create a system that verified COVID-19 data to allow employees to travel. It has also partnered with Singapore’s Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority to transform their data infrastructure. This means that now every time a company is incorporated, it receives a verifiable company profile that can be traced back to the blockchain.
“I think creating this kind of commercial traction and acceptance is something that we’ve done really well,” said Quah.
Accredit onboard clients by first creating an identity for them on the blockchain (it mainly uses Ethereum). It creates a wallet or document store, a smart wallet on the Ethereum network. It manages the private and public key for the client. It then retrieves data via dashboards or API integrations.
Other companies in the same space include Unifier, which is Accreditify along with during the pandemic—Accredit created documents while Unifier reads documents for their clients. US startups like Trinsic work with verifiable identity credentials, while New Zealand companies like MATTR work with the country’s government to create digital identity and verifiable data.
Quah said the main difference between Accredify and other players “is that most of the use cases you see in the market stop at the pilot, proof of concept situation. When it comes to true commercial adoption and scalability, I don’t think many companies have achieved what we’ve done, including creating a full system that has made COVID-19 management in Singapore so seamless. ”
Accredify has offices in Singapore and Australia and plans to double its presence in the latter country by hiring more people. Quah says it is also exploring expansion into Japan by conducting pilot programs with government agencies.