San Francisco-based entrepreneurs Matthew Liu and Josh Fraser have suggested a dramatic proposition with their newest venture: What if open-source software can replace dozens of multi-million or even multi-billion dollar companies?
The two entrepreneurs and their team are building Origin Protocol, a set of open-source blockchain protocols that will allow buyers and sellers of fractional good services like car-sharing, home-sharing, and more to transact on a decentralized, open web platform.
Using the Ethereum blockchain and Interplanetary File System (IPFS), the platform and community are decentralized, allowing for the creation and booking of services and goods without traditional intermediaries. The company has recently announced that their decentralized application (DApp) is now live on the Ethereum test network and numerous new projects have committed to building on their platform.
The problem they are tackling is that, globally, bookings across the sharing economy are expected to top $335B by 2025, with marketplaces like Uber, Airbnb, Postmates, Doordash, GetAround, Fiverr, and TaskRabbit expected to earn $40 billion in annual platform fees by 2022. Some of these sharing economy sites charge upwards of 30 per cent for hosting transactions on their site.
Origin Protocol proposes cutting out these middlemen with new standards for the buying and selling fractional usage assets and services by using blockchain technology. Origin is built on the Ethereum platform, the leading cryptocurrency platform that enables smart contracts to execute on the blockchain. Critical transactional data such as pricing and availability are stored directly on the blockchain. The benefits of this will be dramatically lower fees, no censorship, and redistributed value – where early contributors are rewarded for their participation in the network.
Origin empowers developers and businesses to build decentralized marketplaces directly on the blockchain by making it easy to create and manage listings for the fractional usage of assets and services. Buyers and sellers can discover each other, browse listings, make bookings, leave ratings and reviews, and much more.
The company has just announced EIGHT new projects that will be building on Origin, including:
- SnagRide, a ride-sharing application for mid to long distance rides, serving a severely underdeveloped market in North America
- JOLYY, a low-commission beauty service booking platform already operating in Europe
- Acquaint, a peer-to-peer real estate trading platform on the blockchain, based out of South Africa
- Aworker, a fair and open recruitment platform that aims to reduce the cost of hiring and human resources, operating in Russia
- BlockFood, the world’s first decentralized food ordering and delivery platform, based in France
- Thrive, a decentralized advertising marketplace aiming to give users control and a voice in digital advertising, based in Europe
- ODEM, a global decentralized full-service education marketplace that removes middleman fees, based in the US.
These projects will be joining fellow San Francisco company Bee Token to begin building the latest sharing economy blockchain applications of the future on the company’s platform.