Kell Canty and co-founder, Nathan Eppinger, have been in the blockchain space for a little over four years. In that time they built 2017 BridgeCommunity cohort startup, Verady, a platform that utilizes critical business information to power smart contracts in a private enterprise blockchain. While working through the program and customer interviews the team found their product’s complexity was making it difficult to describe, piloting was proving tough because of so many implementation points, and the year-and-a-half-long sales cycle was not sustainable.
Based on the BridgeCommunity education and exposure, the Verady team realized they had built the product offering of a big company with only the resources of a small company to make it a success. So the Verady team is pivoting back to a product they previously created, but did not find enough market appetite for at the time.
“Verady was super innovative, but it was a lot of innovation all at once and required a huge amount of buy-in. We’re sitting on a gem and need to focus on VeraNet.” – Kell Canty
In 2013, Kell and Nathan were approached by the largest independent Georgia-based accounting and auditing firm to assist with validating transactions and other key data on the blockchain. This came as part of completing certain required auditing procedures necessary to finalize an independent financial audit of a client whose business operated in cryptocurrency. The accounting firm did not have the tools to audit these bitcoin assets and the underlying transactions. Typically, auditors check with the financial institutions that enabled catalogued transactions to cross-reference records. In contrast, cryptocurrency transaction information is stored on the blockchain. It is accessible, but not easily available to anyone without a deep knowledge of how blockchain works, the technical infrastructure to run blockchain nodes, and the ability to program and produce reports.
While responding to a suite of specific procedures requests, Kell and Nathan developed and built-out a cryptocurrency auditing solution, that has been utilized by the accounting firm in subsequent audits.
After not discovering enough market appetite for the product in 2013, when the bitcoin market cap was around a billion dollars, Verady didn’t pursue scaling the solution. Today, there are dozens of cryptocurrencies and other types of block-chain assets and the market cap is close to $175 billion. Kell cites the incredible growth of the cryptocurrency market as a driving force for revisiting the auditing offering.
“We were dismissing a viable, money-making product in favor of something really cool technically, but without a single focus. We have a product with a track record as old as the market itself. When we ran the offering through our recent storytelling, sales and piloting education from the BridgeCommunity we realized we have an incredibly simple value proposition and no longer needed to wait for the general acceptance of bitcoin and blockchain in the general marketplace. It’s here.” – Kell Canty.
The Verady team is solely focused on scaling the auditing service, which they have branded as VeraNet. Kell and Nathan are being approached by auditing/accounting firms and cryptocurrency hedge funds to partner and developing a general offering of the product in an easy to use and accessible network form.
Within the program, Verady has talked to SunTrust about offering consolidated reporting to the bank’s clients that hold cryptocurrency in their portfolios, and are circling back to the other corporations to discuss how Veranet can service their reporting needs as well.