CEVA Logistics joins blockchain-based technology solution from IBM and Maersk

10 / 08 / 2018

CEVA Logistics has joined the TradeLens blockchain initiative created by IBM and Danish shipping giant AP Moller–Maersk which includes more than 20 port and terminal operators, customs authorities and 3PLs worldwide.

TradeLens, based on secure blockchain technology, enables multiple trading partners to collaborate by establishing a single shared-view of a transaction without compromising details, privacy or confidentiality.

The initial focus of TradeLens appears to be on deepsea container shipping, with a 12-month trial capturing more than 154m shipping events on the platform, including data such as arrival times of vessels and container "gate-in", and documents such as customs releases, commercial invoices and bills of lading. This data is growing at a rate of close to one million events per day. 

A joint statement by IBM and Maersk did not elaborate on the airfreight aspect of TradeLens.

Switzerland-based CEVA said in a statement: “CEVA constantly reviews, assesses and audits concepts in the market such as blockchain to determine how they might be applied in the company's network.

“Identifying applicable areas in supply chain management in order to increase value for its customers, has always been a key CEVA objective. The new partnership with IBM and Maersk is the first result of this work.

More than 20 port and terminal operators across the globe have joined the global APM Terminals' network in piloting the solution, including PSA Singapore, International Container Terminal Services, Patrick Terminals, Modern Terminals in Hong Kong, Port of Halifax, Port of Rotterdam, Port of Bilbao, PortConnect, PortBase, and terminal operators Holt Logistics at the Port of Philadelphia.

This accounts for approximately 234 marine gateways worldwide that have or will be actively participating on TradeLens.

Customs authorities in the Netherlands, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, Australia and Peru are participating, along with customs brokers Ransa and Güler & Dinamik.

Freight forwarders, transportation and logistics companies in TradeLens include Agility, DAMCO, Kotahi, PLH Trucking Company, Ancotrans and WorldWide Alliance.

Xavier Urbain, chief executive of CEVA Logistics, said: "This strategic partnership with IBM and Maersk provides CEVA's answer to the untapped potential of blockchain applications in the logistics industry.

"We see high potential in TradeLens because of the real-time access it provides to all partners in the supply chain. It is a big step forward toward establishing a market standard for blockchain solutions.”

Urbain added: “With our integrated network in freight management and contract logistics, combined with our global footprint and state-of-the-art IT capabilities, we will contribute significantly to both our own digitalisation strategy going forward and those of the industry.”

Other initiatives are in the pipeline and are “currently being evaluated” said CEVA and are expected to start delivering solutions in the coming months.

In addition to this, the commercial cooperation between CEVA and its anchor shareholder, deepsea container giant CMA CGM, will “impact the digitalization efforts of both companies with talks already under way to discuss potential synergies”.

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