Acatena, an IoT & blockchain platform that reinvents premium product authenticity, has changed its name to Authena to reflect the true value that they offer their customers. Their current name, Acatena, is derived from the Italian word “catena” which means “chain” and refers to the supply chain or blockchain. Though, their focus is on much more than simply technology.
Matteo Panzavolta, the CEO of Authena, explains, “The idea behind the name change is to break away from pure technology and adopt a name that represents the added value that we bring to our customers.” During the 20 years that Panzavolta has worked as an executive in large corporations, he encountered three main headaches: counterfeiting of goods, product diversion and a lack of end user data. He realised that with the right combination of IoT and blockchain, these issues can be resolved. By changing the company name, Authena aims to shift the attention to these valuable solutions that they offer.
The name-changing process had to reflect how the ethos of the startup has evolved. Thus, Authena has also chosen to upgrade its logo to highlight that they strive to protect their customers ’authenticity. The use of blue and a shield reinforces one of the main principles of the ethos of the company: to instill trust and offer protection. The new logo also has a check mark to emphasise that by using Authena’s technology, brands can guarantee the authenticity of their products, while the Wi-Fi-like symbol links to the connectivity and improved interaction with the product.
Based in Zug, Switzerland, the award-winning startup is currently helping 20 producers of wine and highend perfume brands as well as two large agrochemical corporations. All their customers share the same need: anti-counterfeiting solutions and access to customer insights.
Counterfeiting is a real issue for these industries. Counterfeiters operate by emptying the actual content of bottles only to replace it with fake content to be sold online. Not only does it threaten their customers ’brand name, reputation and revenue, but counterfeiting also poses environmental risks.
With the technology developed by Authena, customers can add their patented NFC tag to their product by the means of common labeling machines. The process is very straightforward, and it can also be integrated into the packaging. The tag will then capture data, such as when and where a bottle was reopened, to help prevent fraudulent refilling. With the help of an app, consumers can also read the tags to ensure that their products have not been opened after production and access details regarding the supply chain and sustainability certifications.
Founded in 2018, the Swiss company has already celebrated major achievements in the short span of only two years. In 2019, they graduated from MassChallenge Israel making them the only Swiss startup to complete this program.
Their hard work and innovation have also been recognised. In 2019, the American online publisher, TechCrunch, has selected them as a Top Pick in the blockchain category at the TechCrunch Disrupt Berlin, a programme that showcases excellent early-age startups. They built on this success and have also won the Luxury Innovation Award 2020 in Sustainability and the public voting for the TOP 100 Most Innovative Swiss Startups.
Though, their own accelerated growth has not meant that they have lost sight of their aim to help their customers grow their companies. As 2020 has been particularly challenging for several industries, Authena has created a direct-to-consumer e-commerce to deliver products protected with their technology across Switzerland to support their partners in the wine and spirits industry.