Blockchain Trial Started By Shipping Giant FedExbr>
Global shipping giant FedEx has begun developing a set of industry standards for blockchain usage.
Fedex is a founding member of the Blockchain in Transporation Alliance (BiTA), an organization of executives operating in the technology and transportation sectors. BiTA aims to standardize blockchain principles and approaches in the freight industry.
Dale Chrystie, vice president of strategic planning & analysis at FedEx Freight, stated that Fedex has millions of records a day in its system, and he thinks of blockchain as a secure chain of custody that could transform the logistics industry. The company believes it holds a lot of promise in that space and would streamline all that data exchange in a very secure way.
Chrystie added that the shipping giant is looking to work on some blockchain pilot programs, with some of them already underway. He said Fedex already started a pilot program using blockchain to store data for dispute resolution.
“Our early work is in dispute resolution, where we have customers both upstream and downstream from us, trying to speak back in a common language,” said Chrystie. “We are trying to determine if that data is common and in some cases, we as carriers, don’t necessarily have all the data that we would like to have. And if we could agree on these elements and standards, we think we can drive a lot of efficiency in the process, and that’s just one example.”
Kevin Humphries, senior vice president of IT at FedEx Services, said FedEx is developing a few pilots to make sure it has an edge in the technology. He believes pilot programs help the company grow its knowledge on technology implementation across different platforms and also in understanding its scalability and performance characteristics. He added that they are hopeful that blockchain will have many use cases.
“FedEx has a long history of innovation in the logistics space since the beginning,” said Humphries. “One of our focuses has always been to find innovative ways to provide the kind of visibility that our customers need to get all the information up and down the supply chain. And blockchain is opening the door to that by giving customers even more visibility to their package before it gets in our hands and after it leaves our hands.”