Agility teams up with Maersk and IBM on blockchain supply chain solution

Logistics provider Agility is collaborating on a supply chain solution developed by Maersk and IBM based on blockchain technology. The use of this distributed ledger technology to manage and track container shipments is expected to create a more efficient and secure method of conducting global trade.

Agility will identify events associated with individual shipments and share and receive information about them via the blockchain technology. The goal is to reduce costs and increase shipping efficiency by integrating information about shipments onto a secure platform that is accessible to shippers, carriers, freight forwarders and other partners in the supply chain.

“Blockchain technology is going to make shipping cheaper, safer and more reliable. Agility can help Maersk and IBM understand the needs of shippers and develop standards that will make trade more efficient,” said Essa Al-Saleh, CEO of Agility Global Integrated Logistics.

Blockchain is a secure, immutable and tamper-resistant ledger that can be used to track shipments, documentation and payment transactions. Its digital infrastructure can connect parties in the supply chain, giving them access to information and real-time visibility based on their level of permission. In addition to showing the location of containers in transit, blockchain can show the status of customs documents, bills of lading and other documentation. Its potential benefits include improved workflows, reduced paperwork and errors, lower processing costs and enhanced visibility.

Customs and border authorities can use the technology to improve the information available for risk analysis, leading to increased safety and security as well as greater efficiency in border inspection clearance.

Agility is one of the world’s leading providers of integrated logistics. It is a publicly traded company with US $4 billion in revenue and more than 22,000 employees in over 500 offices across 100 countries. Agility’s core commercial business, Global Integrated Logistics (GIL), offers air, ocean and road freight forwarding, warehousing, distribution and specialized services in project logistics, fairs and events, and chemicals.