Kuehne & Nagel, world’s largest freight company accounting for 10% of the “world’s air and sea freight business,” which employs 63,000 individuals across 100 countries with a yearly revenue of almost $21 billion, has signed a service contract to use BitSE’s VeChain for asset management, according to a press release.
The worldwide brand will use blockchain technology to smartify parcels and assets, especially luxury goods, by furnishing them with a chip containing a private key that reflects ownership information on the blockchain.
It is not clear whether parcels and luxury goods would be further incorporated with sensors and gps technology, but their smartification with blockchain tech prevents theft and makes it easy to see if a product is fake or genuine, addressing a real problem in property trade and ownership. According to the press release:
“The international BitSE technical team from nine different countries developed the core technology from the bottom layer; a second layer was business function module, implemented as application-driven logic, including SKU management module, inventory management module, order management module, authority module, the user module, vechain module; and the uppermost layer of the user interface, directly to end- users, including search portal, entrance browse, order entry, SKU management entrance, the operator APP entrance, to achieve a true sense of integration blockchain technology services.”
BitSE is a new start-up formed by former employees of IBM, Alibaba and Louis Vuitton. They recently raised $3 million for their new product, Qtum, a blockchain that “absorbs the advantages of numerous public chains like Bitcoin and Ethereum” and VeChain, which tries to smartify products to address fake goods trade and theft.
Their partnership with Kuehne & Nagel is the largest application of blockchain technology for industrial use to date, bringing to the forefront the ability of blockchains to secure, track and identify property, making theft difficult if at all practical and easily addressing fake goods trade.
They compete with Chronicled which employs Ethereum’s public blockchain to provide a likewise service. We can expect many more to join and compete for the lucrative and huge delivery and goods market, as property, from cars to high end dresses to sneakers, is smartified at a minimal cost.
Especially for freight services, the added ability for owners to track their cargo, which may include anything from iphones to cars to just documents, is likely to substantially decrease both immediate costs, as loss insurance may be unnecessary due to the added ability to directly track goods, and future costs, such as legal action.
Shipping law is a highly specialized field with often millions if not billions on the line in cases that take years. Some of these cases hinge entirely on simple facts, such as when the cargo was delivered and where, an easily solvable problem with sensors, gps and blockchain tech.
Therefore, this latest announcement on the implementation of blockchain technology shows that the world’s largest freight company has clearly seen an opportunity. It is now just a matter of time others join as blockchain’s benefits become obvious and substantial.