Mercedes' Parent Firm Partners With DLT Provider to Develop Vehicle-Based Hardware Wallet

Samuel Haig

Major German multi-national firm behind the Mercedes-Benz brand, Damler, has recently partnered with a distributed ledger technlogy provider to develop autonomous car technology.

The partnership was announced via a press release on July 22, with Austrian-based blockchain technology provider Riddle & Code stating that its hardware wallet is powering “a Daimler Financial Services-led consortium to provide an open car wallet solution.”

Tom Fürstner, the chief technology officer of Riddle & Code, stated: 

Autonomous cars must behave consistently to be trusted. Cars are already computing devices. A secure identity ensures that the right authorities have approved code executed inside vehicles and the trustworthiness of data exchanged. Riddle & Code secures this with its cryptographic hardware and uses ledgers to turn automobiles into future market places.

The company asserts that car wallets will enable a number of utilities, including the real-time exchange of data between vehicles and smart-city environments,  and the operation of autonomous vehicles.

The announcement followed Daimler’s successful conclusion of the sixth round of its Start-Up Autobahn program in Stuttgart which focussed on the top of “the future of mobility.” Daimler is now in the process of launching its seventh round, which will focus on sustainability.

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Alexander Koppel, the chief executive officer and co-founder of Riddle & Code, described the partnership as “a prime example of a global market leader betting on European industry collaboration and DLT-based innovation,” adding that “A new generation of open mobility services will create new business models.”

As part of the consortium, Riddle & Code will provide technology supporting “vehicle identity,” “trusted data provenance,” and “a settlement layer.”

During February 2019, Mercedes-Benz, a division of Daimler AG, announced that it had partnered with United States-based software company Icertis to develop a “blockchain-prototype for sustainable supply chains.”

At the time, Mercedes-Benz representative, Wilko Stark, stated: 

Blockchain technology has the potential to fundamentally revolutionize our procurement processes, and could affect nearly the entire value chain. Global supply chains are becoming increasingly complex. With our Blockchain-prototype, we are in the first step testing [...] diverse possible applications with the aim of increasing transparency beyond our direct suppliers.

Daimler, who owns or holds shares in Mercedes-Benz, Mercedes-AMG, and Mitsubishi Fuso, has been a member of Hyperledger since 2017. During the same year, Daimler AG and Landesbank Baden-Württemberg jointly used blockchain technology to conduct a financial transaction.