Five of the six largest carriers on the planet have joined forces with TradeLens to use a platform that will improve the tracking of shipments across the globe. This venture, which joins together companies such as Germany’s Hapag-Lloyd and Japan’s Ocean Network Express, among others, will use the TradeLens platform to help improve the tracking of shipments between the five companies as well as cut costs and reduce paperwork. Mediterranean Shipping Company (MSC), the fourth largest shipping company in the world, had joined with TradeLens in May. There are a number of positives that come out of this venture, with the reduction in paperwork being the biggest. The logistical costs associated with shipping accounts for over $4 trillion, with 80% of that cost being incurred by the five shipping companies joining in the venture. It is for this reason that companies like Hapag-Lloyd have joined in the venture, looking to reduce the logistical costs while also promoting greater trade across the planet. “Now, with five of the world’s six largest carriers committed to the platform, we can accelerate that transformation to provide greater trust, transparency, and collaboration across supply chains and help promote global trade,” explained Martin Gnass, managing director of information technology at the German shipping giant. TradeLens is a company founded by IBM and Maersk which launched in August of last year. The purpose of the company was to create a technology platform that would supply real-time updates for the supply chain management. It is astounding to see how quickly this firm has risen to these heights, but one should not be too surprised. With IBM involved, it should almost be expected that TradeLens would become a giant in this industry. IBM has quickly established themselves as the global leader in blockchain technology, partnering with some of the largest firms on the planet to create innovative platforms to track information. This includes the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, Walmart, Nestlé, among others. TradeLens is just another example of how they have moved ahead of most other firms in developing technology that provides real-world solutions for big problems. By providing these ocean carriers with blockchain technology that helps track shipping, it allows participants in the platform to move their goods through a supply chain that will make tracking cargo much more efficient. This also appears to be a change in direction for many of the shipping companies across the globe. They have been reluctant to share this kind of information with one another out of fear that they may lose customers by sharing information with other cargo companies. However, this new platform demonstrates the willingness of these companies to see that reducing logistical costs and providing better service and security can benefit all involved.