Swedish automaker Volvo AB (OTC: VLVLY) has invested an undisclosed amount in blockchain startup Circulor, it announced Wednesday.

What Happened

According to Financial Times, which earlier reported the news, the invested amount is in “high single-digit millions.”

Three other organizations, including SYSTEMIQ, Total Carbon Neutrality Ventures, and Plug & Play, also participated in the funding round.

Volvo Cars said it had already been working with Circulor to keep track of its supply chain for cobalt, a material used in making batteries for its line of electric vehicles.

Following the investment, made through its venture arm Volvo Cars Tech Fund, the two companies will increase the scope of their partnership to other raw materials, including mica, Volvo cars said.

“By supporting Circulor’s ongoing development we can expand the use of blockchain technology in our operations and contribute to a more sustainable business,” Volvo Cars chief procurement officer Martina Buchhauser said in a statement.

Why It Matters

Keeping track of supply chains has been one of the most popular use-cases of blockchain besides currency.

The technology allows for records to be immutable, at the same time as ensuring security and privacy through encryption.

The supply chain of cobalt is particularly problematic, with the mining of the mineral resulting in the death of hundreds of children in Africa.
Leading technology companies Apple Inc. (NASDAQ: AAPL), Alphabet Inc. (NASDAQ: GOOGL) (NASDAQ: GOOG), Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ: MSFT), Dell Technologies Inc. (NYSE: DELL) and Tesla Inc. (NASDAQ: TSLA) are all facing a wrongful death class action lawsuit over the death of the children occurred due to cobalt mining, CBS News reported late last year.

Price Action

Volvo shares last closed at $16.6 in the otc market on Tuesday.

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