This week Marubeni confirmed it has invested in blockchain network TradeWaltz bringing the platform’s total funding to Yen4 billion ($31m). The blockchain cross border trade solution was founded by NTT Data and went live in March 2022. Three of the seven founding investors were trade conglomerates Mitsubishi Corp, Toyota Tsusho and Kanematsu, with Marubeni making it four.
TradeWaltz aims to digitize the paper-heavy cross border trade process and says its blockchain solution improves operational efficiencies by more than 44%.
There are now a total of 14 investors, including Japan’s largest bank MUFG, major insurers and logistics firms. By the start of December 2022, the number of participant companies on the network had grown to 160.
One of its strategies is to integrate with trade platforms in other jurisdictions, something that it demonstrated with Thailand, Singapore, Australia and New Zealand through the Indo-Pacific Supply Chain Enhancement Project. We also reported in November 2022 that Thailand had integrated its National Digital Trade Platform with TradeWaltz.
TradeWaltz was developed using enterprise blockchain Hyperledger Fabric.
This is not Marubeni’s first blockchain investment, having invested in the agricultural commodities platform Covantis at the end of 2021.
2022 was a tricky year for blockchain trade initiatives. Trade finance platform we.trade went bankrupt in June, followed by Maersk announcing the shuttering of the substantial TradeLens network in November.