Deutsche Bahn AG, the largest railway operator and infrastructure owner in Europe, has partnered with blockchain integration platform Unibright to check the possibility of tokenizing its ecosystem.
In the current state, customers of DB can already use different channels to get a specific ticket for a specific train. A customer can get a ticket online via www.bahn.de, at a desk, at a ticket machine or by using the app “DB Navigator” on a smartphone, in addition to print tickets.
Unibright was instructed to do a 4-week-deep dive and preparation of an DB internal kick-off workshop to prepare the project, to extract parts of the concept that can be potentially put into a business and to consult on possible implementation and integration matters.
“One goal of the workshop concept was to define better, which players can be part of an ecosystem around Deutsche Bahn and to make proposals on how this ecosystem can be built. The result should feel natural to the customer and provide tangible advantage,” states Marten Jung, CEO of Unibright.
Through tokenization, tokens can then be configured as transferable, partial, controllable and can be restricted in their use due to location, time or events. The values in a blockchain can be personalized while not being centralized. The concept of “trustless trust” is defined by blockchain technology itself, making it easier for new participants to decide on becoming part of the ecosystem. And finally, the client has a real benefit of being part of a decentralized ecosystem and implicitly strengthens the ecosystem by using it.
“The technical part of integrating existing players into a newly build ecosystem is not trivial. Therefore, one goal of the workshop concept was to show, which parts of the solution can live in a blockchain and how can they be integrated with the “off-chain world”, a challenge that is explicitly targeted by the Unibright Framework,” Stefan Schmidt, CTO of Unbright.
For the Proof of Concept, 4 different areas were covered.
A token and asset model based on NEM features, including a basic REST-API, working on these assets and offering the most important operations, views for the customer, views for the responsible designer of the ecosystem, and views for the responsible manager of the ecosystem.
Assets and Tokens based on NEM features
Unibright has offered to build the ecosystem on the NEM Protocol and a specially developed framework, where the tokens can be organized into clusters, such as for travel, food and accomodation. A business specialist can monitor the network without any particular skills.
The API has to support the following operations on these smart assets:
Booking a journey, creating a wallet and purchasing tokens, transferring tokens, clearing, and evaluation of customer experience.
“With the concept of a blockchain based token ecosystem, relying on “trustless trust”, we can get one step closer to an independent acceptance of services of different suppliers. We can expand companywide insights to market-wide insights and build new distribution channels and markets. This enables us to better understand and know our customers, and their demands,” says Akram Sioud of DB Vertrieb.