Makerstreet, a network of digital agencies of which Elements is a part, is one of the largest players in its field in the Netherlands, specializing in digital strategy, design, innovation, technology, and marketing, with nearly 400 employees.
Over the past ten years, 'the street' has experienced a growth of over 750%. This growth is attributed to a fundamental attitude summed up as 'ownership' - the profound sense of connection to the results that Makerstreet achieves for its clients and, by extension, for the companies in the network.
Because the creators within the network's companies are of essential value to both clients and the enterprises providing these services, Makerstreet believes they are entitled to a share of the value they represent, i.e., employee ownership. And that calls for its own blockchain platform: The Maker Market.
Within Maker Market, shares are distributed to employees in the form of virtual tokens. These tokens have a value that can rise or fall, similar to the way the value of businesses fluctuates. In essence, it's like having your own cryptocurrency exchange platform running on a blockchain. Elements developed the platform. Employees of Makerstreet can thus trade with tokens from the 18 different agencies within Makerstreet.
Employees with a permanent contract receive a digital wallet with a fixed amount of tokens from the company they work for. They can trade these tokens themselves and purchase 'shares' of various companies within the MakerStreet network.
It is a blockchain platform that utilizes various APIs to provide a robust and maintainable solution. The choice of blockchain allowed for a seamless integration of different layers, which aligned perfectly with React as the foundation for both the blockchain and the backend library.
React proved to be the best choice for the frontend due to the need for extensive logic and the easy connection to the backend library and cryptocurrency layer. The platform also employs Redux for state management and various APIs such as Node API for coins, Matcher API for the order book, and Candles API for chart data. Auth API is integrated for authentication, login, and user data, while Strapi.io is used for managing news and updates. Google Analytics assists in tracking user behavior, and Sentry handles error handling.
Throughout the development of the platform, the focus was on ensuring security and user experience. Makerstreet employees can create an account with a username and password and link their wallet to their email address, allowing them to take their shares with them when changing jobs.
Erwin van Hasselt from Makerstreet says: "One of the fundamental principles of Makerstreet is to apply innovation in everything we do, both within our own organization and with our clients. With the launch of Makerstreet Market, we are one step closer to employee ownership where employees actually share in the results of their efforts. We believe in creating a culture that encourages entrepreneurship and want to be an attractive employer for talent in this way."