Two blockchain technology startups — one from Nova Scotia and one from Miami — have signed memorandums of understanding to establish operations in the University District. Rajat Rajbhandari, CEO and cofounder of Miami-based DexFreight, an open source logistics platform built on blockchain technology and machine learning, was conducting a panel at the annual South by Southwest conference when he was approached by the University of Memphis.

Cody Behles, assistant director of Innovation and Research Support at the U of M’s FedEx Institute of Technology, made it a point to tell Rajbhandari about the institute’s cross-campus research clusters for blockchain and logistics innovation after the panel. “The FedEx Institute of Technology is committed to building Memphis’ reputation as an international innovation destination by providing the infrastructure and support to companies that are ready to make Memphis their home,” Behles said.

Halifax, Nova Scotia-based Peer Ledger, which creates and hosts blockchain applications in the automotive manufacturing and health care sectors, is a startup that has committed to establishing its U.S. headquarters near the university. Peer Ledger CEO and president Dawn Jutla’s connection to the U of M is its CIO, vice provost and graduate school dean Jasbir Dhaliwal.

“We were colleagues,” Jutla said. “We wrote a paper together that was published in 2001.

E-commerce was huge back then, and now it’s blockchain.” Jutla first came to Memphis for a two-day blockchain workshop in 2016. Read more from…

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