Dive Brief:

  • CSX has become the first railroad to join Maersk’s blockchain-backed freight tracking platform, Tradelens, according to a press release
  • “As our customers move onto TradeLens, we’ll be helping provide them with better end-to-end shipment tracking capability,” Mark Wallace, CSX’s executive vice president of sales and marketing, said in a statment.
  • The platform now consists of more than 100 organizations, 55 ports and terminals, and a dozen customs authorities, according to a Maersk article posted in September. Based on the membership at that time, Maersk said it was capturing data from 600 ports and terminals. ​​

Dive Insight:

A multi-modal freight traceability platform is only as good as the number of players signed up to share data and, in recent months, Tradelens has picked up important data outside of its core membership. 

The platform signed up six of the top 10 ocean carriers by volume, plus two more outside the top 10 by July. Since then, Global Container Terminals (GCT), a Canadian terminal operator running four container terminals on the West Coast of Canada and the East Coast of the U.S., signed up in October

Doron Grosman, President & CEO of GCT said he sees joining the platform as a competitive advantage for the company. “As competition increases from other ports and customer demands intensify, we need to activate every solution to increase cargo velocity through our terminals and improve performance,” Grosman said​ in a statement. Singapore feeder operator X-Press Feeders also joined in early October.

Along with participating freight players, TradeLens has announced a few customers in 2019. In June the platform began a pilot with Russia’s Ministry of Transportation in St. Petersburg. And in August, Tradelens was selected by the Thai Customs Department to enable near real-time tracking of cargo coming into Thailand. Thai customs authorities will use the platform to better allocate resources in the port as they see ships destined for Thailand leave their port of origin, making for more efficient and thorough inspections, according to the Bangkok Post

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