[Press Release] Startbahn Launches “Startbahn Cert.”: a Blockchain Certificate Issuing Service with IC Tags for Artworks. Now Available for Certificate-Issuing Organizations Including Galleries and Art Schools In and Outside of Japan.

2020.03.25Press

Startbahn, Inc. (Startbahn), developing “Startrail,” a blockchain infrastructure for distribution of artworks, has launched a beta version of “Startbahn Cert.,” a service that provides a Startrail Blockchain Certificate with an IC Tag. Startbahn Cert. allows its users to issue and transfer “Blockchain Certificate with IC Tags” and view Certificate information online. This service makes it easier to link a physical artwork with its certification data on the blockchain.



◾️ Overview of Startbahn Cert.

Startbahn Cert. is a service that allows certificate-issuing organizations to issue and manage "Startrail Blockchain Certificate” (Certificate) for artworks and “Artwork Management Tags with an IC chip” (IC Tag) linked to the Certificate information. IC Tags are available in two types: stickers and cards. An artwork owner can view his/her artwork’s Certificate information by scanning the IC Tag with his/her smartphones or similar devices. Organizations involved in the distribution of artworks can issue and transfer Certificates through the online interface.

Startbahn Cert. has been developed based on Startrail (formerly Art Blockchain Network, https://startrail.io), a blockchain platform for managing the custody of artworks and their circulation. With Startbahn Cert., it is now undemanding to match the provenance information on the blockchain to the real provenance status of the artwork since users can link a Certificate on Startrail with an artwork by an IC Tag attached to the artwork.

The information on the Certificate includes the issuer of the Certificate as well as the title and creator of the work; thus, the reliability of the Certificate is guaranteed. This Certificate is not a mere digital replacement of the traditional paper certificate. Users can also include a unique rule set such as those pertaining to distribution, royalty-like revenue returned to the creator, and etc in the Certificate. Furthermore, organizations that do not currently have a web system for selling and managing artworks can issue and transfer Certificates using Startbahn Cert..

Overview of Startbahn Cert.


◾️ Special Features of Startbahn Cert.

Startbahn Cert. pairs up the “UID” of the IC chip, a unique ID assigned when the IC chip is manufactured, and the Certificate ID. When an owner of the artwork scans an IC Tag attached to it with his/her smartphone or similar devices, the Startbahn Cert. viewer opens up. In the viewer, the owner can view the basic artwork information as well as an issuer information, its provenance, its unique rule set, and etc recorded on the Certificate. On the other hand, organizations involved in the distribution of artworks can create their account on on the Startbahn Cert. website which allows them to issue Certificates and update the artwork’s provenance according to the transactions. They can include the ownership and exhibition history of the artwork in the provenance information.

Startbahn Cert. Viewer

We will continue to improve and enhance Startbahn Cert.. For example, we are currently considering adding functions such as: (a) providing an artwork information at exhibitions using QR codes; and (b) interlocking with warehouse management by additionally embedding UHF chips that can be read over long distances on the storage boxes.


◾️If Interested in the Blockchain Certificate with the IC Tag:

We provide two types of IC Tags, stickers or cards, to be attached accordingly to the shape and material of the work. Each type can be customized with an original design, for example, inserting an issuer’s logo on the Tag. Any kind of art-related organizations such as galleries, art schools, and organizations which issue artwork certificates can sell and provide the Certificates as their own brands.

Prices start from ¥3,000 (tax not included) for each sticker and ¥3,500 (tax not included) for each card. Design customization is charged separately. We are already open for business. So, if you are interested in the Blockchain Certificate with the IC Tag, please contact us by filling out the inquiry form on the Startbahn Cert. website (https://cert.startbahn.io).


Left and Center: Original design sample of the IC Tag (card: 8.6 x 5.4cm/ sticker:1.8 x 1.8cm)
Right: IC chip built into the IC Tag


◾️ 3,000 Certificates with IC Tags Supplied to the Eastern Culture Foundation (ECF) for a Charge

Startbahn will supply 3,000 Blockchain Certificates with IC Tags to ECF for a charge, as an initial introduction of Startbahn Cert.. ECF, which announced a business partnership with Startbahn in October 2019, will select artists in need of the Startbahn Cert. and provide it to them free of charge. This is one of the ways ECF is supporting artists.

Eastern Culture Foundation was recreated from the Montblanc & Terrada Foundation by Yoshihisa Nakano, the former President and CEO of Terrada Warehouse, using the prize money from the Montblanc International Culture Award. ECF aims to cultivate a more culturally rich Eastern Asia area which transcends regions and borders. Councilors include the architect Kengo Kuma and the President and Representative Director of Haneda Future Research Institute, Inc., Hiroshi Onishi. Since 2020, we have been engaged in various art-related activities, exchanges of human resources, and support for young artists mainly in Asia.

This business alliance will achieve our aspiration to support young artists, which has been our motivation to develop Startrail. More organizations are to implement Startbahn Cert., and we are excited to expand our business on a global scale.


◾️ About Startrail

Startrail is an infrastructure supporting the development of the fine arts ecosystem by furthering its trust and credibility with blockchain technology. Issuing a Startrail Blockchain Certificate that records the basic information of the artwork enables distribution management including recording provenance information across all stakeholders involved in the distribution of the artwork. In addition, it is possible to automatically execute a rule set created by the artist regarding distribution and use of the works (including royalty-like revenue returned to the artist) every time a transaction is made.

Since the announcement of the blockchain project in July of 2018 by Startbahn, the “Art Blockchain Network” has undergone a demonstration period for over a year and has been refined to detail and improved considerably. After getting valuable feedbacks from our partners of various art-related businesses, we have published a full “White Paper” illustrating the whole picture of Startrail in October 2019. “Art Blockchain Network” was renamed “Startrail” in March of 2020 and we plan to further expand business related to Startrail in the future.

Startrail will be run by “The Startrail Consortium,” an organization led by Startbahn, to maintain independence and fairness of its public platform. In the future, we plan for this consortium to be jointly led by multiple experts, companies, and organizations.


◾️ Overview of Startbahn

Startbahn is a company that aims to realize a richer society by providing the technology needed by artists and people involved in art all over the world. We are promoting the development of “Startrail,” a blockchain infrastructure for art distribution and evaluation. In addition, as a service connected to Startrail, Startbahn is developing its online service "Startbahn Cert." and blockchain joint businesses with corporations and organizations.


◾️ For Inquiries about This Release

Startbahn, Inc.
PR Officer: Risa Mizuno
Inquiry URL: https://cert.startbahn.io
Email address: [email protected]

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* The contents of this news release are true as of the date of release. The information contained herein is subject to change without notice.

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