Unlike Zurich and other sophisticated cities in Switzerland, Wetzikon is a Swiss town not known by many. This, however, may change within the next few months if all goes according to plan. Wetzikon, known mainly for its churches and farmland, has been tapped to serve as a sort of potential model for blockchain projects going forward. And the aim of this program is a noble one; if all goes well, small and medium-sized businesses will benefit as a result of the plan.
It all starts with 250,000 Swiss francs, which are valued at around $280,000. This disbursement will go out to approximately 25,000 of the residents of Wetzikon. Although some might propose that 10 francs apiece won't change anything, this experiment may very well prove that it absolutely can. Residents will receive an electronic coupon and will be able to access their funds by using a smartphone app called ecoo. Once they've logged on, residents will then be able to convert their coupons into WetziKoins. For instance, someone who is going grocery shopping at a local shop could use their WetziKoins to pay for some of their order. It's an incentive to shop locally, and the merchants who accept these funds will then be able to convert them back into Swiss francs. Basically, it's a win-win for all in the town.
This sophisticated program was built on the Tezos blockchain and received assistance from a number of other entities. It was designed specifically with coronavirus relief in mind. This way, someone who was going to purchase paper towels off Amazon may choose to purchase them in town with WetziKoins, thus contributing to the local economy. In a world where everything seems to have shifted, it might not be surprising if this pilot program ends up inspiring a lot of other similar projects.