About EWR, Inc.

Electronic Title Description

An electronic warehouse receipt (ewr) is simply a computer record of all of the information which is required on a legal paper receipt.  That data record is stored on the disk of a secure computer system which has to be approved by the U.S. Department of Agriculture as meeting specific operating standards.  Electronic receipts are authorized by federal legislation and represent title documents which are legally equivalent in every way to paper receipts.

The entity which operates the computer system on which electronic receipts are stored is called a "Provider."  Within the Provider's computer, each receipt record is associated with party - the "holder" - who has access to that receipt record.  Only the holder can "transfer" his electronic receipts to another holder.  This is accomplished by the holder simply informing the Provider via computer as to who the new holder should be.

An electronic receipt system must be highly secure and the Provider (EWR, Inc.) has the responsibility for maintaining that integrity. Federal regulations require further security in the form of backup computer systems and an audit trail of all system activity.

The electronic receipt operation begins when a warehouse creates a receipt record on EWR's web site.  Those records become legal receipts when stored on the EWR computer.  The warehouse is the initial holder and can give instructions to the Provider to make another party the new holder.  The Provider sends confirmation of these transactions to the "sending" and to the "receiving" holders.

An electronic receipt can have many holders during its existence but can have only one holder at any specific moment.  At some point, a shipper-holder will "deliver" his receipts back to the issuing warehouse (who then becomes the holder) along with instructions regarding shipment of the physical commodity.  As the warehouse ships the commodity, it sends instructions to EWR's computer to cancel the appropriate electronic receipts.  Based on these directions from the warehouse, EWR marks the receipt record as canceled and a legal receipt no longer exists.

The preceding description provides only the most simplistic view of electronic receipts.  Certainly the concept and basic operations are quite simple and straightforward.  However, complexities can be added to the system to provide for many different situations.  Such added features increase the value of the electronic receipt system to all of its users.

Electronic Document Advantages

The many advantages of electronic receipts are the key reason that electronic receipts have had such a powerful impact in several industries in a short expanse of time.  First, electronic receipts eliminate the need for handling paper - including keypunching, sorting, and transporting paper.  In addition, the electronic receipt "moves" over the Internet which permits transfers between traders to be completed much more swiftly than paper documentation allows.  Keypunching (and its associated cost) of data is reduced or eliminated because receipt information can be directly captured into the holder's computer from EWR's system.  A further advantage comes from the fact that each Provider maintains an audit trail which keeps details of every movement of electronic receipts between holders.  This information can be very helpful in resolving problems and locating receipts; however, this same information is not available in any format for paper receipts/documents.

Financial Institutions

Financial institutions have become increasingly comfortable with electronic warehouse receipts. Only a handful of banks would accept electronic receipts as collateral in September 1995.  Today more than 100 financial institutions find such loans quite acceptable.The EWR Inc. Provider systems allow for the use of the cotton, grain and peanut receipts as collateral by financial institutions, with special programming in place to meet these unique requirements.