Top Port Operator, “DP World” to Join Blockchain Shipping Platform, “TradeLens”


One of the world’s leading ports operators and logistics provider ‘DP World’ is joining the blockchain shipping platform created by IBM and Danish logistics giant Maersk. The collaboration between DP World and the TradeLens aims at accelerating the digitization of global supply chains.


The COVID-19 pandemic is prompting supply chain actors to focus on becoming more resilient through better digitization through blockchain technology.  Mike Bhaskaran, a Chief Operating Officer for the Dubai-based operator, stated that, “The situation around the coronavirus is a perfect catalyst for making sure everyone in the supply chain can communicate with each other digitally.


DP World specializes in cargo logistics, port terminal operations, maritime services, and free trade zones. In 2019, DP World’s terminals handled 71.2 million TEU containers from around 70,000 vessels. Now, it aims to connect all its 82 marine and inland container terminals, along with feeder companies and logistics divisions with TradeLens.


TradeLens is a global supply chain platform focusing on containerized freight and logistics, which was launched by IBM and Maersk in April 2018. The platform brings together data from the entire global supply chain ecosystem, including shippers, port operators, and shipping lines. TradeLens aims to modernize and replace manual and paper-based documents with blockchain-enabled digital solutions.


Collaboration Claims to Improve Operational Efficiency


TradeLens is aiming to track cargo from booking to clearance to payments​, removing paper documents, and reducing friction using blockchain, a distributed technology as the supporting data infrastructure. DP World with TradeLens will be able to improve operational efficiency by tracking container flow across multiple carriers in the supply chain cycle



Sultan Ahmed Bin Sulayem, Group Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of DP World, explained that “Our decision to team up with TradeLens is driven by our vision for intelligent logistics, reducing costs and creating value. Moreover, it will also expand the capabilities of DP World’s digital platform created to move online management of logistics.


Sultan Ahmed further added that, By working with TradeLens, we will accelerate the digitization of global trade. Modernizing the processes by which logistics operate is critical to building more robust and more efficient supply chains which will help economic development and generate more prosperity.”  So far, the operator has connected its Cochin Port (India) with the TradeLens platform via API technology. Further, it plans to collaborate with other DP World business units, including the feeder line Unifeeder, which has already initiated.


Blockchain Continues to Contribute Towards Supply Chains


DP World has always been on board with blockchain’s potential to bring new visibility to shipping for some time. In 2018, it signed an industry-wide blockchain initiative, named Global Business Shipping Network(GBSN).


Moreover, according to the recent report, on April 6, Ziyang Fan, head of digital trade at the World Economic Forum(WEF) and Rebecca Liao, CO-Founder and Executive Vice President of blockchain project SKUChain, claims that blockchain can provide the supply chain visibility that is critical during times of regular production and of crisis.


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