ZIM, the largest shipping line in Israel, has announced that it is now ready to offer its blockchain-based platform for electronic bills of lading to customers in selected trades.
It follows a successful year-long blockchain pilot which saw ZIM and several logistics companies test the paperless Bills-of-Lading platform designed to facilitate trade activities on multiple shipping lanes.
ZIM blockchain now readily available
After piloting the platform in cooperation with Wave Ltd and Sparkx Logistics, the carrier now says it has evaluated the platform with additional customers in different trade lanes. The shipping company realized that blockchain technology can not only replace paper-based processes but also streamline workflows which rely on emails, fax, and other existing tools.
One of the highlights of this proof of concept was the completion of two recent transactions during which the bill of ladings were transferred to the receiver in less than two hours following the vessel departure — a process that usually takes days or even weeks. All the associated documentation was also processed via the ZIM blockchain platform including endorsements and ownership transfers.
With successful trials now complete, the company is opening the platform to all customers, but will focus initially on the Asia-South Africa and North America-Mediterranean trades.
Digitizing processes through blockchain
In the shipping industry, blockchain enables digitization of documentation processes, helping to save shipment time, increase trust, and reduce cost for all parties involved. With blockchain, companies can transform their operations from inefficient paper-based processes to a digital and secure decentralized database model rooted in blockchain technology.
Eyal Ben-Amram, ZIM CIO, commented:
“Having gained considerable experience with this revolutionary technology, we are now moving forward. It’s part of our commitment to maximize digitization, and at the same time enhance our customer service levels and nurturing customer relations.”
With its growing use cases and new applications being deployed across the globe, blockchain is starting to become a valuable tool for global shipping lines and supply chain companies. Last year, Mexico’s Port of Veracruz announced it was developing a blockchain port community system to improve the efficiency of freight and logistics at the port and optimize the carrier onboarding processes.
In October 2018, the port of Rotterdam launched a blockchain logistics pilot with Samsung subsidiary in order to streamline the shipping process and bring a higher level of efficiency to the ports supply chain.