TradeLens blockchain platform welcomes two new Asian partners

Earlier this month, digital freight forwarder Shipwaves and SAGT, the first public private partnership (PPP) container terminal in Sri Lanka, joined TradeLens, a blockchain-based digital container logistics platform jointly developed by A.P. Moller – Maersk and IBM.

Illustration. Image Courtesy: TradeLens/Maersk

Founded in 2015, India-based Shipwaves is Asia’s first digital freight forwarder.

 As explained, Shipwaves’ association with TradeLens is aimed at accelerating the digitization of the ocean logistics space, especially in India and the Middle-East.

Having recently allowed shipping bills of lading to be filed over a blockchain platform, India has been betting big on blockchain-enabled solutions to digitize its maritime supply chains. The TradeLens blockchain solution provides controlled, permissioned access to secure and immutable transportation documents while bringing together stakeholders such as shipping carriers, ports, customs offices, and other players in the ecosystem through its platform.

Through this linkage, Shipwaves will be able to provide timely end-to-end supply chain visibility, secured sharing of digital shipping documents, and data directly from partners. This will enable the forwarder to improve efficiency and decrease operational costs by a significant margin. Additionally, the smart contract-based workflows will automate and digitize multi-party interactions, which will result in improved efficiency.

With Shipwaves collaborating with TradeLens, we have an important supply chain enabler furthering our joint desire of removing manual tasks and enabling digitized workflows in the logistics industry,” David Ombewa Ocholi, Product Manager for West Central Asia and Africa at TradeLens, commented.

“Our working with TradeLens marks a significant milestone which will enable us to digitize our customers’ operations and lead them into the blockchain era of global trade,” Sajid Mohammed, COO – Shipwaves, said.

While we were one of the early innovators in the digital freight forwarding space, the ongoing pandemic taught us that, this alone is not enough… We believe that the TradeLens platform will truly elevate our value proposition, allowing us to interconnect with shippers, carriers & other stakeholders.”

In a separate statement, TradeLens revealed that SAGT became the first terminal in Sri Lanka to adopt blockchain technology by collaborating with TradeLens.

This move is expected to help accelerate the digitisation agenda of the shipping industry in Sri Lanka by transforming manual, paper-based and time-consuming administrative processes into digital ones.

SAGT has played an important role in facilitating global trade through Sri Lanka by serving most of the world’s shipping lines with the ambition of empowering the hub aspirations of Sri Lanka. With an annual throughput of over 2 million TEU containers, SAGT is a pivot for movement of cargo through South Asia.

The collaboration with TradeLens will allow SAGT to bring together data from the entire global supply chain ecosystem that includes shippers, shipping lines, ports and many more supply chain players from around the world. This data, based on the blockchain-powered TradeLens platform, will improve operational efficiency through better visibility of container flows across multiple modes.

“Digitisation and digitalisation offer all stakeholders in the supply chain significant operational cost efficiencies. SAGT is firmly committed to embracing technology in our efforts to constantly drive efficiencies towards an ‘ease of doing business’ customer experience. The collaboration with TradeLens is a very important step forward in strengthening our digital agenda and staying ahead of the curve when it comes to digital transformation,” Ted Muttiah, Chief Commercial Officer of SAGT, said.

“SAGT is a flagship company on the Board of Investment in Sri Lanka and we are excited to be a part of the digital journey that TradeLens offers the Sri Lankan shipping and logistics industry.”

“TradeLens is an open and neutral platform that is digitalising the global supply chain ecosystem. With SAGT coming onboard, we have an important partner in South Asia which believes in our efforts of bringing efficiencies in logistics and thus helping our customers in bringing down cost of logistics,” Bimal Kanal, Head of TradeLens, South Asia, noted.

“Our ambition is to have all stakeholders including shippers, shipping lines, ports, banks, custom authorities and so on, involved in the global supply chain to be on a common platform that will benefit the entire industry.”