Cambridge, MA (PRWEB) May 04, 2011
Sproxil, a U.S.-based company that provides world-class brand protection in emerging markets through software and services that work anywhere there are mobile phones, today announced that Paul W. Chang, Global Business Strategy Lead, Emerging Technologies for IBM Software Group, has joined the company’s Board of Advisors. Chang, who has more than 20 years of experience in technology and market development in RFID, biotech and optical network technologies, recently appeared in a series of IBM ads that promote the use of drug serialization as a means to combat the counterfeiting of medicines.
Sproxil’s Mobile Product Authentication™ (MPA™) solution allows consumers to verify that the product they are buying is genuine by using a mobile phone and a simple, free text message. Using a scratch card method, similar to that used for replenishing cellular talk-time, the company allows users to reveal a one-time-use code on drugs and text the code to a “911 for fake drugs” number which is identical on all cellular networks within a country. The solution has been shown to be the most secure and reliable available on the market. Both local companies and global pharmaceutical companies, including GSK and Johnson & Johnson, are using MPA to meet their brand protection needs.
“Sproxil teams with world class partners, like IBM, to provide a user-friendly solution to consumers, one that requires minimal education and training to use, so it’s easy to access and understand,” said Paul W. Chang. “As someone who has been actively involved with the FDA’s anti-counterfeiting initiative since 2003, I am looking forward to parlaying that experience into an opportunity to advise Sproxil on further improvements to the technology behind its MPA solution.”
To date, Sproxil has already sold millions of anti-counterfeit labels in Nigeria and has set up the first national mobile-based anti-counterfeit service in Africa, beginning in Nigeria with a partnership with NAFDAC. The company also recently received a $1.8 million Series A round of financing from Acumen Fund, a non-profit global venture addressing poverty in South Asia and Africa, an investment that will help Sproxil build its sales teams in the U.S. and Nigeria, while also supporting its expansion into India and Kenya.
Chang, who oversees business strategy and market development for the Industry Solutions in the IBM Software Group, is responsible for the development and execution of IBM’s “Supply Chain Framework” solutions across multiple industries including pharmaceutical, consumer products, automotive, retail, and industrial. He earned a Bachelor of Science degree from Carnegie Mellon in mechanical engineering.
“Paul most recently led the global initiative at IBM in the pharmaceutical and distribution industries, working with many global pharmaceutical manufacturers and large wholesalers to implement a serialization/RFID strategy to drive business value and comply with regulatory mandates,” said Dr. Ashifi Gogo, CEO of Sproxil. “His background uniquely lends itself to many facets of Sproxil’s mission, so we are excited to have his insight and guidance in support of our business goals.”
The other members of the advisory board are Egbe Osifo-Dawodu, MD, partner at Anadach Group, formerly with the World Bank Institute; Ethan Zuckerman, serial entrepreneur and senior researcher at the Berkman Center for Internet and Society at Harvard University; and Mitual Shah, director of engineering at the West Wireless Institute.
Sproxil provides world-class brand protection for emerging markets through software and services that work anywhere there are mobile phones. Delivering automatic protection, simple labels and robust back-end analytics with its Mobile Product AuthenticationTM (MPA) solution, Sproxil offers a comprehensive anti-counterfeiting strategy for cash-based societies, one that enables consumers to text message an item-unique code for a rapid response that confirms a brand’s genuineness. Simple, easy to use and with no consumer capital investment, the Acumen Fund-backed solution – provisioned on three continents – offers the world’s only patented, consumer SMS verification service. Our solution also helps companies connect directly to their consumers through customized text message responses and ads that specifically target those demographics with known buying behaviors. Sproxil was named winner of IBM SmartCamp Boston and received honorable mention in IBM’s SmartCamp World Finals in 2010, and is a member of IBM’s Global Entrepreneur initiative. Learn more at http://www.sproxil.com.
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