IBM Shipping Blockchain

Announced today, IBM’s shipping blockchain, TradeLens, has signed up two more major shipping carriers. The tech giant owns the platform with container giant Maersk.

IBM Shipping Blockchain

Now, the company has added Hapag-Lloyd and Singapore-based Ocean Network Express (ONE) to the network. Both are leading shipping carriers–ranked fifth and sixth in terms of size, respectively.

Last month, TradeLens signed up global carriers CMA CGM and MSC.

IBM’s shipping blockchain was first launched in 2018 and, at the time, had only one other shipping carrier: Asia’s Pacific International Lines (PIL), along with Maersk and its subsidiary Hamburg Süd listed. The blockchain is built on the Hyperledger Fabric blockchain foundation.


Gaining Traction

In its first year, it struggled to list other carriers. According to sources, the competition was put off by the fact that TradeLens was owned by IBM and Maersk. However, now TradeLens has 15 container giants on board including ZIM, KMTC, Safmarine, Sealand, Seaboard Marine, Namsung, Boluda, and APL.

It seems that the latest to join, Hapag-Lloyd, believes IBM’s shipping blockchain offers “a much-needed transformation in the industry, including its partnership model.”

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There is competition out there to IBM and Maersk’s blockchain that may have initially swayed its fleet away from TradeLens. One example is a shipping blockchain pilot run by Accenture. This project initially included Singapore-based shipping carrier APL and giant Kuehne + Nagel. However, the former along with its parent company, CMA CGM, has since chosen to join TradeLens.

Todd Scott of IBM detailed this further in an interview with CoinDesk:

“There were some other projects that I think that some of the carriers had engaged in that may not have produced the same kind of results [as TradeLens]. So I think that may have played a role as well.”

IBM has another major supply chain distributed ledger, the Walmart-backed Food Trust, which is also live.

Featured Image: DepositPhotos © ilfede

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