By James Paine May 28, 2018
Managing a supply chain isn’t easy, and that’s the case even when you’re running a small business. By the time that you start to look at larger national and international companies, the supply chain starts to look less like a chain and more like a web, full of interconnectivity and riddled with inefficiency.
Supply chain management is such big business now that all sorts of specialists are starting to crop up who make it their mission to iron out these inefficiencies and to save companies money. Artificial intelligence, machine learning and other new technologies are already being applied to the challenge of optimizing the supply chain, but there’s another new technology on the block that’s ready to change the game.
I’m talking, of course, about blockchain, the technology which underlies bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies and acts as an unhackable, decentralized ledger. It’s been described as “a record-keeping mechanism that makes it easier and safer for businesses to work together over the internet.” You can probably already see why it has a lot of potential when it comes to supply chain management.
More at: How Blockchain is Disrupting Supply Chain Management – Inc.com
By Stacey Hailes May 24, 2018
The world’s largest retailer of diamond jewellery, Signet, has been announced as the first jeweller to join the pilot programme for the De Beers Group-led blockchain, Tracr.
Signet, the owner of UK jewellery retailers H Samuel and Ernest Jones, joins a growing list of industry leaders trialling the platform during its pilot phase and enabling Tracr to complete the first digital link all the way from diamond production through to retail.
A Signet project team will work alongside the Tracr team to ensure the platform meets the needs of the jewellery manufacture and retail sectors, with the partnership initially focusing on the tracking of diamond jewellery and expanding the pilot’s scope to cater for smaller-sized goods.
More at: De Beers welcomes Signet as first jeweller to join blockchain pilot programme – Professional Jeweller
May 24, 2018
The state of South Carolina slapped a cease-and-desist order to a blockchain startup due to an alleged statute violation. The company is called ShipChain and is involved in freight product tracking using ethereum-based blockchain tech. It’s also a member of the Blockchain in Transport Alliance, which counts JD.com, FedEx, and other major companies in the shipping industry among its echelon.
To be specific, the order highlights that ShipChain continuously proffered investment opportunities to South Carolina residents via digital token despite the startup being unregistered to conduct such business. If the order passes, it will mandate ShipChain to cease “participating in any aspect of the securities industry in or from the State of South Carolina.”
The fledgling shipping business has 30 days to request a hearing on the case. When granted audience, the startup can dispute that the tokens offered do not qualify as an unregistered securities offering. The company writes on its website that customers can pay via tokens to book freights for shipping products. The tokens are the only form of payment that the platform acknowledge.
In Texas, a Bitcoin investment startup has also been hit with a cease-and-desist order earlier this month due to the company conducting business without being registered to the proper agency. The order outlined that the startup lured investors with blinding numbers that return on their investments is 100 percent guarantee in just 21 days with no risk whatsoever. This type of businesses are classic scams that are taking advantage of the growing popularity of blockchain and cryptocurrency.
More at: Blockchain Startup Slapped with Cease-and-Decease Order – EconoTimes
May 24, 2018
“Blockchain. Blockchain. Blockchain. That’s all I hear about when I go to meetings.” This was Ken Brown’s sentiment during the Global Supply Chain Summit conducted on Tuesday. Brown is the senior vice president of SICPA North America, a supply chain security firm.
The popularity of blockchain among supply chain giants is understandable since the technology offers transparency, precise monitoring, data security, and acceleration of transactions. All of these benefits can drastically improve a company’s operation that is involved in the supply chain ecosystem.
Ralph Carter, FedEx’s vice president of trade and international affairs, said that traditional strategies mostly focused on control and collection of revenues. But because of blockchain enabling companies to operate securely and rapidly in the digital world, border management is being integrated into that design.
He added that efficient borders are required in today’s competitive market in order to stay relevant. “People need to be able to move items in and out quickly,” Carter said.
Indeed, commissioner of the U.S. Customs and Border Patrol Kevin McAleenan said that the proliferation of e-commerce has increased the incoming and outgoing numbers of shipping activities. This, in turn, placed a lot of weight on his agency. He has to keep the trade flowing while simultaneously increasing protection of consumers from counterfeit products, as well as being vigilant of illicit activities.
More at: Blockchain is Transforming How Supply Chain Giants are Operating – EconoTimes
By Roshni Vayyapuri May 15, 2018
Fred Smith, chairman and CEO of the American multinational courier delivery services company FedEx, said to sources, “Blockchain has the potential to completely revolutionize what’s across the border.” He stated this while speaking at Coindesk’s Consensus 2018 in New York. He wants to embrace blockchain technology to establish and maintain to be on the top in a rapidly changing digital world.
He went on to explain that logistics and transportation industry is facing one prominent issue, “massive amount of friction” in cross-border logistics. The friction is majorly due to the differences in standards, regulations, and terminologies.
While speaking to the audience he told, “For cross-border shipments, ‘trust’ is a legal requirement for every transaction. What blockchain has is a potential for the first time ever to make the information available for everybody.”
It was earlier in February this year FedEx joined the Blockchain in Transportation Alliance (BiTA) to explore the potential opportunities along with other partners in the same industry. They also introduced an innovative pilot program to manifest what information would be required for a blockchain to mitigate between customers using FedEx. They also want to store records using distributed ledger technology.
More at: FedEx CEO: Blockchain has the potential to revolutionize logistics industry – BCFocus
By Holly Demaree-Saddler May 15, 2018
DENVER, COLORADO, U.S. — As agribusiness interest increases and use-cases for blockchain technology become more prevalent, agriculture stands to benefit by lower transaction costs, optimized logistics, increased traceability, enhanced food and safety protocols, and potentially greater value creation across the supply chain, according to a report from CoBank’s Knowledge Exchange Division.
Blockchain, which is an information storage technology that allows people to record transactions in a digitized, decentralized data log maintained on a network of computers, already is being put to use by major technology companies and come commodity merchandisers.
“This technology offers an opportunity for revolutionary change in food traceability, tracking of commodities and grain trading,” said Tanner Ehmke, manager of CoBank’s Knowledge Exchange Division. “The new uses of blockchain may be met with initial resistance, but those who break through and adopt technology early stand to benefit the most.”
According to the report, the technology will force supply chain partners to adapt as interest grows in direct-to-farmer marketing channels.
More at: CoBank: Rapid growth of blockchain brings change to ag – World Grain
By Erik Gibbs May 15, 2018
LG, the “Life’s Good” company that makes televisions, smartphones and other electronic appliances, is getting in on the blockchain boom. Through its LG CNS subsidiary, it has created a blockchain-powered service that provides logistics capabilities for finance, communication and manufacturing firms. The platform, called Monachain, also provides a digital wallet that allows users to conduct financial operations.
Monachain’s main focus is to be a digital authentication system, followed by a cryptocurrency and a digital chain management tool. It has developed a new identification system, a decentralized identifier, enabling personal identification as well as online smart device payments. LG CNS is currently working on securing agreements with a number of banks to expand its cryptocurrency offering to a larger customer base.
In a statement, an LG representative said the Monachain “can help business owners boost productivity as the company provides a digital supply chain management system that enables suppliers to manage the entire production processing efficiently.” Indeed, blockchain technology has already shown to provide huge benefits to logistics and supply chain operations. The results have been documented extensively, creating greater efficiency and customer safety.
More at: LG to launch own blockchain—the Monachain – Coingeek
By Delton Rhodes May 14, 2018
The vision of an autonomous trucking fleet is already becoming a reality for some freight companies. Uber, Waymo, Tesla, and Embark are all working on this technology. While autonomous driving is an interesting technology in itself, its application for the trucking industry has even greater potential when combined with blockchain technology for supply chain logistics. Here is an outlook on how blockchain-based trucking will change the future of the global supply chain.
How will this new system function?
While many of the major blockchain projects (i.e. Bitcoin, Ethereum, and others) are focused on building public P2P payment systems, blockchain for the autonomous trucking industry would function as a private B2B logistics system. What this means is that not everyone would have access to shipment information. Instead, only relevant parties along the supply route would know the exact details and updates of shipments. Manufacturers, shippers, carriers, brokers, and the end customer are a few of the parties who could have access to this information.
Many supply chain industry experts think that blockchain is necessary because of its potential to solve many of the current market problems. Essentially, one of the biggest factors that could lead to further adoption of distributed ledger technology is the trucking industry’s ongoing fragmentation.
More at: Autonomous Trucking and Blockchain Technology: Advancing Supply Chain Oversight – CoinCentral
By Toby Shapshak, Contributor May 10, 2018
Blockchain is being used to track diamonds.
Blockchain technology has been used in a pilot project to track diamonds from the mine to retail by South Africa’s De Beers Group, the world’s largest producer of diamonds.
The company has tracked 100 high-value diamonds along its entire value chain using an “immutable and secure digital trail [that] was created for a selection of rough diamonds mined by De Beers as they moved from the mine to cutter and polisher, then through to a jeweller” it said in a statement.
De Beers calls its Blockchain platform Tracr, which it says will be open to the industry when it launch later this year. The pilot was launched in January. “When fully operational, Tracr will provide consumers with confidence that registered diamonds are natural and conflict-free, improve visibility and trust within the industry, and enhance efficiencies across the diamond value chain,” it said.
More at: Blockchain Used To Track Gems To Counter Blood Diamonds And Fakes – Forbes Tech #BigBusiness