Japanese IT giant Fujitsu says it has launched a blockchain-based data storage system that can be used by retail merchants to tokenize traditional promotional tools such as coupons and reward points.
According to a press release published Wednesday, the system – currently being rolled out in Japan – can be integrated with the promotional activities of merchants in shopping centers or tourism zones that traditionally allow consumers to spend coupons or digital points received from one shop at different outlets within the area.
By tokenizing such digital points and coupons, the blockchain system can process and store consumers' usage transactions in a decentralized manner, reducing the workload of a traditional data center and allowing for better data analysis, the firm says.
The ultimate goal, according to Fujitsu, is to revitalize regional economies – that's if the application can be expanded across communities where tokenized points can circulate among shops, restaurants, schools, transportations and tourism sites.
To arrive at its final product, Fujitsu conducted various field trials using blockchain technology through partnerships with different organizations, including railway, telecoms companies and convenient stores. In March of this year, the company tested the point-tokenization technology at one branch of Taiwan's FamilyMart convenient stores, where a distributed ledger platform was used to transact and store users' digital stamps in the shop.
Fujistu is no stranger to blockchain, having taken part in pilots testing the technology in money transfers and having already released a similar system for secure data sharing. More recently, the firm launched a blockchain innovation center in Belgium to facilitate research and projects around the tech.
Perhaps most notably, in March the firm revealed a new technology that it said could help to mitigate problems with Ethereum smart contracts.