British hospitals to use blockchain to track COVID-19 vaccines
Two British hospitals are using blockchain technology to track the storage and supply of temperature-sensitive COVID-19 vaccines, which is one of the first such initiatives in the world.
The hospitals in Stratford-upon-Avon and Warwick in central England are expanding their use of a distributed ledger – an offshoot of blockchain – from tracking vaccines and chemotherapy drugs to monitoring fridges storing COVID-19 vaccines. The technology will strengthen record-keeping and data-sharing across supply chains.
Firms from finance to commodities have invested millions of dollars to develop blockchain, which allows the secure and real-time recording of data, in the hope of significant cost cuts and efficiency gains. “The system will allow to demonstrate our commitment to providing safe patient care.” said Steve Clarke, electro-bio medical engineering manager at South Warwickshire NHS in a statement.
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Brexit delays cause shoppers to face fees on fashion items
As Brexit continues to cause delivery issues, shoppers are reportedly facing delays and extra fees of up to £5 on fashion items being shipped from the EU.
Retailers such as & Other Stories, Asics and Goodhood blame Brexit for the delivery delays, with hold-ups lasting weeks. Parcels with the incorrect documentation are being returned to sender when they reach the border, according to the Mail on Sunday. The main cause of the delays is expected to be due to new paperwork as well as extra customs and border security arrangements.
Under the new rules, anyone who sends parcels from the EU to the UK is required to fill in forms that include proof of origin and the reason for sending the package. Retailers selling to Britain will now have to pay customs duties and fill out declaration forms, plus register for VAT in the UK.
The rise in deliveries comes as online orders increase due to Britain continuing with various lockdown restrictions. Some retailers and delivery firms are also charging fees to cover the cost of the extra red tape.
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Electric Truck Maker Rivian Raises $2.65 Billion Ahead of First Vehicle Launch
Electric vehicle startup Rivian Automotive LLC has raised another $2.65 billion, strengthening its balance sheet as its looks for an edge in the nascent market for electric trucks.
Asset manager T.Rowe Price Associates Inc. led the round, which also included Fidelity Investments, Coatue Management and Amazon, all of whom have already backed the automaker, according to Rivian. The influx of capital for the Irvine, California-based company came at a valuation of $27.6 billion, according to a person familiar with the matter, and adds to the $5.35 billion that the company raised in five earlier funding rounds dating back to 2019. Auto maker Ford also holds a stake in Rivian after they invested $500 million in 2019. However, it was not clear whether Ford participated in this round.
The new money will allow the company to focus on launching three products this year, while scaling up for growth. The new funding round demonstrates that the new investment into electric vehicle companies is showing no signs of slowing down so far in 2021. Investors are betting smaller challengers can take on legacy auto makers, causing valuations for all electric vehicle companies to balloon over the past year.
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