Posts

One Manato

Hapag-Lloyd and ONE join Maersk/IBM blockchain platform TradeLens

Hapag-Lloyd and merged Japanese container carrier Ocean Network Express (ONE) are the latest box shipping lines to join the IBM/Maersk Line-led blockchain initiative TradeLens.

The news means more than half the world’s container shipping capacity is part of the TradeLens project, following the addition of MSC and CMA CGM at the beginning of June. Of the top six largest box carriers, just Cosco/OOCL is not part of the project.

“The addition of more leading carriers to TradeLens will help global supply chain customers expand and explore the benefits of digitisation and deliver new opportunities to the increasing number of TradeLens ecosystem participants across the global supply chain,” said Vincent Clerc, chief commercial officer at Maersk.

“As a neutral industry platform, TradeLens offers supply chain visibility, ease of documentation and the potential of introducing new products on top of the platform. These attributes bring new opportunities for the Maersk transformation towards becoming an end-to-end container logistics company improving the experience and services we offer the customers,” he added.

Hapag-Lloyd and ONE will each operate a blockchain node, participate in consensus to validate transactions, host data and assume the role of ‘trust anchors’ – or validators – for the network.

Both companies will be represented on TradeLens’ advisory board, which includes members from across the supply chain to advise on standards for neutrality and openness.

“TradeLens has made significant progress in launching a much-needed transformation in the industry, including its partnership model,” said Martin Gnass, managing director of information technology at Hapag-Lloyd.

“Now, with five of the world’s six largest carriers committed to the platform, as well as many other ecosystem participants, we can collectively accelerate that transformation to provide greater trust, transparency and collaboration across supply chains and help promote global trade.”

A senior TradeLens executive added that blockchain technology was ideally suited for large networks of disparate partners, given that established a “shared, immutable record of all the transactions that take place within a network and enabled permissioned parties access to secured data in real time”.

Bridget van Kralingen, senior vice president of global industries, clients, platforms & blockchain at IBM, explained: “Through improved trust, simplicity and improved insight into provenance, blockchain solutions such as TradeLens are delivering proven value across business processes for our clients and their ecosystems.

“Massive new efficiencies in global trade are now possible, and we’re seeing similar effects across the food industry, mining, trade finance, banking and other industries where the value of blockchain is more apparent than ever before,” she added.

Source: The Loadstar

hapag lloyd

Hapag-Lloyd cutting costs to cope with a rise in fuel prices

German shipping company Hapag-Lloyd is cutting costs to cope with a rise in fuel prices that led it to slash full year earnings forecasts last month, its chief executive told shareholders on this week.

“Major cost positions have risen more than initially expected and are pressuring operating margins,” CEO Rolf Habben Jansen said in Hamburg. “We are responding short-term to this development through forceful cost management and will keep Hapag-Lloyd competitive this way,” he added.

Among the measures being taken are accepting more valuable cargo, trying to reduce terminal contract costs and stripping out economically inefficient ship systems, he said.

The effects of recent industry mergers have yet to be felt as the integration process is only just starting, he added, referring to a merger in April of three Japanese rivals and Chinese approval for COSCO Shipping Holdings’ takeover of Hong Kong peer Orient Overseas International.

Hapag-Lloyd in June cut its full-year profit forecast, saying freight rates had recovered more slowly than expected, while fuel costs had ballooned as global oil prices respond to supply disruptions and tightness.

The news led to several banks cutting their price targets on the stock, while the company stressed it hoped to reap substantial synergies from its 2017 merger with Arab peer UASC.

Habben Jansen also said the global ship orderbook had shrunk to just 11 percent of the total fleet. That should help bring supply and demand into a better balance over the next 2 1/2 to three years, he said.

At the same time, world shipping demand could rise 5.2 percent per year, which should result in freight rate increases from the second half of 2018 onwards.

But the CEO also said increased geopolitical uncertainty – as the world’s leading economies head for a full-blown trade war – was acutely felt by container liners and their customers.

Hapag-Lloyd last month said it has stopped one of two feeder services to Iran and would decide on the remaining one before a Nov. 4 deadline imposed by the United States.

Source: Reuters