Sunday, March 5, 2017

IBM and Maersk Develop Blockchain for Shipping Industry

IBM is working with Maersk to use blockchain technology to help manage and track the paper trail of tens of millions of shipping containers across the world by digitizing the supply chain process from end-to-end to enhance transparency and the highly secure sharing of information among trading partners.

The blockchain solution based on the Hyperledger Fabric and built by IBM and Maersk, the global leader in transport and logistics, will be made available to the shipping and logistics industry. Blockchain is an immutable, security rich and transparent shared network resource that provides each participant end-to-end visibility based on their level of permission. IBM hosts the solution on the IBM Cloud and the IBM high-security business network, delivered via IBM Bluemix.

Some highlights:

  • Each participant in a supply chain ecosystem can view the progress of goods through the supply chain, understanding where a container is in transit. They can also see the status of customs documents, or view bills of lading and other data.
  • Detailed visibility of the container's progress through the supply chain is enhanced with the real time exchange of original supply chain events and documents.
  • No one party can modify, delete or even append any record without the consensus from others on the network.
  • This level of transparency helps reduce fraud and errors, reduce the time products spend in the transit and shipping process, improve inventory management and ultimately reduce waste and cost.
  • The solution enables the real time exchange of original supply chain events and documents through a digital infrastructure, or data pipeline, that connects the participants in a supply chain ecosystem. This promotes sustainable transport by integrating shipping processes and partners, and establishing evaluation frameworks through increased transparency and trusted access. 

"As a global integrator of container logistics with the ambition to digitize global trade, we are excited about this cooperation and its potential to bring substantial efficiency and productivity gains to global supply chains, while decreasing fraud and increasing security," said Ibrahim Gokcen, chief digital officer, Maersk. "The projects we are doing with IBM aim at exploring a disruptive technology such as blockchain to solve real customer problems and create new innovative business models for the entire industry. We expect the solutions we are working on will not only reduce the cost of goods for consumers, but also make global trade more accessible to a much larger number of players from both emerging and developed countries."

"We believe that this new supply chain solution will be a transformative technology with the potential to completely disrupt and change the way global trade is done," said Bridget van Kralingen, senior vice president, Industry Platforms, IBM. "Working closely with Maersk for years, we've long understood the challenges facing the supply chain and logistics industry and quickly recognized the opportunity for blockchain to potentially provide massive savings when used broadly across the ocean shipping industry ecosystem. Bringing together our collective expertise, we created a new model the industry will be able to use to help improve the transparency and efficiency of delivering goods around the globe."

http://www.ibm.com

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