The days when blockchain was portrayed as a cure-all for businesses of all kinds have gone. Now that the hype has faded, enterprise blockchain projects have quietly begun to ship. While some of these initiatives have faded into obscurity, others have prospered, suggesting that there’s life in enterprise blockchain yet.
After a Shaky Start, Enterprise Blockchain Adoption Ramps Up
When IBM and shipping giant Maersk teamed up to create a blockchain solution for supply chains, the two goliaths seemed to be shooting towards an open goal. The product, dubbed Trade Lens, would help shipping companies manage cargo and inventory, eliminating the vast bulk of administrative work required to keep track of consignments, cutting costs by up to 20% in the process.
The promise was of an “open and neutral” supply chain platform “underpinned by blockchain technology” and “supported by major industry players.” The project was slow to gain traction, however, with the duo initially finding it hard to secure major partners. Now, almost two years on, the project is finally gathering momentum, but the question still remains as to why two major players found it so hard to bring partners onboard. The answer may lie in the way that IBM-Maersk envisioned their blockchain from the outset, and the level of trust they asked their partners to place in them.
Rick Schmitz, CEO of hybrid blockchain LTO Network, has a theory as to why the shipping project floundered initially. “The real potential and the value of blockchain integration comes from creating a global level playing field,” he told news.Bitcoin.com. “A consortium is not the optimum way to go as it merely recreates an already existing permissioned system.” Schmitz remains a staunch advocate of enterprise-ready blockchains,