News in Brief Supply chain

Philadelphia port trials IBM/Maersk blockchain


Holt Logistics, operator of the Packer Avenue Marine Terminal port in South Philadelphia is conducting a pilot on the IBM/Maersk blockchain.

IBM and Maersk announced the creation of a joint venture back in January 2018. Since 2014 the two companies have worked together on digitization initiatives. The purpose of the joint venture is to improve transparency, promote information sharing which in turn will reduce costs, and improve productivity and speed. They estimate that the savings could be as much as 20% of the cost of shipping.

In March the European Commission competition department approved the creation of the joint venture.

Other ports already participating with the blockchain include Port Houston and Rotterdam Port Community System Portbase.

Thomas J. Holt III, Business Development Manager for Holt Logistics, said: “Our industry generates enormous amounts of paperwork and data. We believe that blockchain technology will increase both information velocity and validity throughout the supply chain, unlocking billions of dollars in value for stakeholders each year. We are delighted to be a first mover with Maersk and IBM in adopting this technology platform here in the Ports of Philadelphia.”

“We welcome Holt as an early adopter to our new platform, which we believe will bring efficiencies and improvements to all participants through digitized solutions backed by blockchain and other innovative technologies,” said Michael J. White, who heads the initiative for Maersk and will serve as CEO of the new joint venture.