The Hyperledger community just got bigger with the addition of the Italian Post Office, also known as Poste Italiane. The Italian postal service has identified blockchain as a cutting edge technology with tremendous potential that will be invaluable to the postal service industry in the future. And now, according to a recent press release, the Italian postal agency has decided to join the Hyperledger blockchain consortium. This partnership could very well lead to the creation of other Poste Italiane blockchain initiatives in the future.
Hyperledger is a prominent and globally recognized blockchain hub, an open source community focused on pushing for the advancement of distributed ledger based (DLT) technologies and other related tools through global collaboration. The work at Hyperledger has led to the development of several useful cross-industry blockchain applications touching on the key areas of finance, banking, supply chain management, and manufacturing. When it comes to institutional adoption of blockchain applications, Hyperledger blockchains are leading the charge. IBM has been able to successfully market Hyperledger blockchains to many of its clients while leveraging Hyperledger to launch other blockchain platforms to support global supply chains.
With the success of Hyperledger, it is no surprise that the Italian Post Office decided to join forces with the consortium to further its blockchain agenda.
Poste Italiane Blockchain Journey
Post Italiane has been seeking to modernize its services and improve its overall operations. Its participation in the Hyperledger initiative is laying the groundwork for the agency’s Deliver 2020 Business Plan. This plan mentions the adoption of emerging technologies as a critical aspect of improving the postal group efficiency. Although there hasn’t been any announcement yet, the work with Hyperledger could eventually allow for the development of Post Italiane blockchains; these protocols like many Hyperledger DLT products could be custom fit for solving specific logistics and supply chain problems.
Speaking on its collaborative efforts with Hyperledger, Mirko Mischiatti, Chief Information Officer for Poste Italiane had this to say:
“Poste Italiane wants to actively participate in this new and exciting community by becoming a member of Hyperledger in order to continue its path for the innovation and modernization of financial, logistic and insurance industries. We really look forward to working with other members and making our effort to contribute for the enhancement of blockchain technology.”
Poste Italiane isn’t alone
The success of the Hyperledger hub has seen it grow into a blockchain driven community with input from big names aside from Poste Italiane like IBM, Huawei, Intel, Deloitte, JPMorgan, and American Express. Also, another postal service, Swiss Post announced last year that it was working with popular Switzerland-based telecom provider, Swisscom to develop private blockchains based on Hyperledger protocols. This partnership also highlighted the preference of private blockchains by many institutions over their public counterparts.
The merit of developing private blockchains was explained in a statement by Swiss Post:
“In contrast to “public blockchains” (that use proof-of-work), this private blockchain infrastructure requires much less energy, since it can only be used by identified users who have a contractual relationship with the providers of an application. This enables more efficient agreement procedures as well as significantly higher security and performance.”
Hyperledger is only scratching the surface
With numerous endorsements and global adoption of its blockchain protocols, the Linux Foundation Hyperledger is becoming a force for the advancement of blockchain and other similar emerging technologies. Hyperledger has recently announced a new platform dubbed Hyperledger Grid, a framework solely focused on providing reusable tools for companies seeking to develop supply chain and logistics solutions. IBM is also closely working with Hyperledger to complete its agricultural supply chain platform called IBM Food Trust which will be adopted by Walmart later this year for tracking food provenance as it moves through its supply chain. Food Trust is touted as a platform that will help improve trust in the agriculture industry and prevent food-borne disease outbreaks.
Blockchain is already going mainstream and with Hyperledger push for further development within this niche, there will be even more adoption by other multinational companies who are looking to stay ahead of the curve by making their products/services more efficient and trustworthy. Transparency is the currency of the future in supply chain management and Hyperledger blockchain protocols are helping supply chain and logistics companies to effectively operate in this new digital era.