Maersk and IBM Digitises Shipping Through Blockchain

Maersk and IBM are going into a joint venture to provide more efficient and secure methods for conducting global trade using blockchain technology. The new company will offer s jointly developed global trade digitisation platform built on open standards and designed for use by the entire shipping ecosystem. It will address the need to provide more transparency and simplicity in the movement of goods across borders and trading zones.

Since the cost and size of the world’s trading ecosystems continues to grow in complexity, The World Economic Forum reports that by reducing barriers within the international supply chain, global trade could increase up to nearly 15%. This in turn will end up boosting economies and creating jobs.

In addition, applying blockchain technology to digitise global trade processes, a new form of command and consent can be introduced into the flow of information. This could empower multiple trading partners to collaborate and establish a single shared view of a transaction without compromising details, privacy or confidentiality.

Through the collaboration, Maersk and IBM will use blockchain technology to power the new platform and employ other cloud-based open source technologies. This includes artificial intelligence (AI), IoT and analytics, delivered via IBM Services to help companies move and track goods digitally across international borders.

“This new company marks a milestone in our strategic efforts to drive the digitisation of global trade. The potential from offering a neutral, open digital platform for safe and easy ways of exchanging information is huge, and all players across the supply chain stand to benefit,” said Vincent Clerc, Chief Commercial Officer at Maersk and future Chairman of the Board of the new joint venture.

“Our joint venture with Maersk means we can now speed adoption of this exciting technology with the millions of organisations who play vital roles in one of the most complex and important networks in the world, the global supply chain. We believe blockchain will now emerge in this market as the leading way companies seize new untapped economic opportunities,” added Bridget van Kralingen, Senior Vice President of IBM Global Industries.

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