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Commonwealth Bank Turns to IoT and Blockchain Tech for Cross-border Trading

By on July 30th, 2018 at 7:54 am UTC · 3 min read

The Commonwealth Bank of Australia used the Ethereum blockchain platform for tracking an international shipment of almonds as part of its experiment.

Banks, Blockchain News, Internet of Things (IoT) News, News
Photo: Commonwealth Bank of Australia
Photo: Commonwealth Bank of Australia
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In today’s world there is little surprise that more and more traditional financial institutions are taking a decision to implement the latest technologies and to go in for blockchain.

The latest news has come from Australia. The Commonwealth Bank conducted an experiment with internet of things (IoT) and blockchain technologies. As a result the bank managed to carry out a successful shipment of 17 tonnes of almonds from Australia to Germany.

The shipment was tracked via a private blockchain platform designed by the bank on top of the Ethereum network. As it has been announced, such companies as Olam Orchards Australia Pty Ltd, Pacific National, the Port of Melbourne, Patrick Terminals and shipping carrier OOCL Limited also participated in the project. Hardware and software support was provided by Australian IoT provider LX Group.

Apart from storing shipping container data, completed tasks and shipping documents, the purpose-built blockchain-based platform made it possible to digitize three key components of the trading process: operations, documentation and finance.

Moreover, the partners had an opportunity to view the location of the shipment from the very beginning till the final destination. Via four installed IoT devices, it was even possible to monitor the conditions of shipment including temperature and humidity inside the container.

As for the quality of data obtained, the bank’s statement reads:

“This level of data provided partners in the supply chain with a greater level of transparency and efficiency regarding the location, condition and authentication of the goods being transported”.

The participants of the project could also upload and view bill of landing, certificates of origin and other documents required by customs onto the private blockchain. It is also worth mentioning that the experiment was conducted without ceasing of any existing processes.

Emma Roberts, Supply Chain Manager at Olam Orchards Australia Pty Ltd which is one of the participants, commented their experiment the following way:

“Trade inefficiency can be extremely detrimental to our business. It is vital that as an industry, we look at emerging technology for ways to enhance the supply chain to develop a more transparent and efficient platform. This project has shown that through collaboration from all parts of the supply chain that this can be achieved.”

Holding of such a cutting-edge experiment is a new prove of the CBA’s commitment to offer market leading innovative solutions which would drive the industry changes. In 2016, the bank started its way of innovations, when together with Wells Fargo and Brighann Cotton the CBA completed the first global trade between two independent banks utilizing blockchain and smart contract technologies.

“We thrive on the opportunity to work with our customers to help them adapt to changing industry trends, particularly technology. It was key to us that we partner with businesses across the entire supply chain, so we could get a holistic picture of how this technology could impact and improve the efficiency of the transport and logistics industry,” CBA managing director of Industrials and Logistics in Client Coverage Chris Scougall said.

Meanwhile, CBA is not the first to turn to blockchain searching for shipping enhanced efficiency. Another project, not so large scale, but no less needed one, also addressed the issue of inefficient deliveries. Blockchain-based parcel delivery platform Triwer goes beyond just delivering parcels currently working on making shipment processes not only more controllable, cost effective and resource-efficient, but also goes as far as to turn the industry into more environmentally-friendly one.

Julia Sakovich
Author: Julia Sakovich

Having obtained a diploma in Intercultural Communication, Julia continued her studies taking a Master’s degree in Economics and Management. Becoming captured by innovative technologies, Julia turned passionate about exploring emerging techs believing in their ability to transform all spheres of our life.

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