Hapag-Lloyd and ONE make TradeLens the de facto container blockchain standard

TradeLens has cemented its position as the de facto standard blockchain system for the container shipping industry, with Hapag-Lloyd and Singapore-based Ocean Network Express (ONE) announcing that they will become the latest industry heavyweights to join the platform, jointly developed by Maersk and IBM.

Hapag-Lloyd and ONE, the world’s fifth and sixth largest carriers respectively, join CMA CGM and MSC Mediterranean Shipping Company in having recently announced their intention to use TradeLens to help manage container shipments.

With these additions, the scope of the platform now extends to more than half of the world’s ocean container cargo.

“Expanding digital collaboration is critical to the evolution of the container shipping industry,” said Martin Gnass, Managing Director Information Technology at Hapag-Lloyd.

“TradeLens has made significant progress in launching a much-needed transformation in the industry, including its partnership model. Now, with five of the world’s six largest carriers committed to the platform, not to mention many other ecosystem participants, we can collectively accelerate that transformation to provide greater trust, transparency and collaboration across supply chains and help promote global trade.”

The addition of these two global carriers means that TradeLens customers now have access to major carriers in all three of the biggest global vessel sharing alliances on the platform.

“We believe this innovative approach based on open standards and open governance can benefit the entire industry while ultimately benefitting our customers who rely on the world’s shipping industry to transport global container volume of more than 120 million TEU across international borders each year,” said Noriaki Yamaga, Managing Director, Corporate & Innovation, Ocean Network Express.

“The opportunities to drive greater innovation across the shipping supply chain are enormous and we are excited about the opportunity to provide our leadership and insight to help the platform continue to evolve.” 

Supply chain modernisation

TradeLens was launched to help modernise supply chain processes by replacing manual and paper-based systems with a digital platform that would enable participants to connect, share information and collaborate in a secure and efficient manner.

Members of TradeLens can share their data with other parties as required to collaborate in moving cargo around the world, helping to create a transparent, secured, immutable record of transactions through the use of blockchain technology.

“The addition of more leading carriers to TradeLens will help global supply chain customers expand and explore the benefits of digitisation and deliver new opportunities to the increasing number of TradeLens ecosystem participants across the global supply chain,” said Vincent Clerc, Chief Commercial Officer, A.P. Moller – Maersk.

“As a neutral industry platform, TradeLens offers supply chain visibility, ease of documentation and the potential of introducing new products on top of the platform. These attributes bring new opportunities for the Maersk transformation towards becoming an end-to-end container logistics company improving the experience and services we offer the customers.”

Hapag-Lloyd and ONE will each operate a blockchain node after joining the platform, participating in consensus validation of transactions, hosting data, and assuming the role of Trust Anchors, or validators, for the network.

Both companies will also be represented on the TradeLens Advisory Board, which will include members across the supply chain to advise on standards for neutrality and openness.