Supply Chain Challenges and Where Blockchain Fits
Supply chain has generally been distinguished as the industry sector other than financial services where blockchain will play a major transformative role in the near term. The purpose of this point of view is straightforward. The supply chain has traditionally been a more chaotic aspect of global trade including myriad regulations, paperwork, and participants who are spread over the world. Additionally, it is also an opaque system with real accounting and accountability happening just at specific pre-chosen checkpoints. Therefore, this movement of goods that exceeds $17 trillion of value annually (making it one of the costliest aspects of global trade) is defaced with issues like counterfeits, thefts, and forgery.
Blockchain is widely hailed as the next technology wave for the supply chain industry that will take care of the greater part of these existing problems. It is required to bring enhanced visibility into the system, help stop counterfeits and thefts, improve regulatory compliance while decreasing paperwork, and reduce costs altogether. Extensive literature is being composed and some technology architectures are being created on utilizing blockchain in different types of supply chain networks like pharmaceuticals, transportation, and logistics, and other perishable food items like seafood and luxury goods like diamonds. Numerous technology organizations (both startups and existing technology stalwarts) are showcasing frameworks and solutions to implement blockchain frameworks.
Core Value of blockchain
Blockchains at a crucial level is an alternative to a centralized ledger or database system. Unlike a centralized system, where different parties refer to a similar version of the database (through separate instances) that is managed centrally and securely by somebody, in a blockchain-based framework, each participant conveys its very own database – which are all in sync (in a similar state). Any legitimate change to this shared ledger implies every last duplicate of the ledger is updated after the change is verified and acknowledged by all parties.
This consensus process eliminates the requirement for a centralized trusted database and rather replaces it with a network of equals (as far as accounting). That is the reason blockchains are often called trustless systems since there’s no requirement for a central trusted party. While, generally, some trusted blockchain networks are coming up (e.g., hyper ledger technologies), these trusted blockchains are still basically trustless systems but within a pre-identified (and verified) group of network participants. That is the reason they are called private blockchains (that are not open to simply any individual who needs to join the network) in opposite to public blockchains like Bitcoin or Ethereum networks (where anybody can join).
The key interest of blockchain is, in this manner, the elimination of a central party who should be trusted to be honest. Blockchain is additionally extremely resistant to hacking and different sorts of cyber attacks as the database are presently appropriated. Up to a basic larger part of these distributed ledgers are protected (not traded off), the network overall can effectively reject malicious changes that may have been done to a handful of nodes by an external party and, in this manner, retain the original state of the database. A successful hacking attempt on a blockchain, in this way, is computationally and economically unviable.
How Kartchain will benefit Supply Chain Industry?
Kartblock is developing a blockchain based supply chain product called ‘Kartchain’, which is designed to streamline flows among buyers, sellers and all the stakeholders in a supply chain and help improve its efficiency, transparency, and operations.
Using blockchain technology, Kartchain will enable participants of any supply chain to more securely and transparently track a wide range of transactions.
Each time a product changes hands, the transaction could be documented, making a permanent history of a product, from manufacture to sale. This could significantly lessen time delays, added costs, and human error that plague transactions today.
Some supply chains are already utilizing the blockchain technology, and experts recommend that blockchain could become a universal “supply chain operating system” before long. By harnessing the power of blockchain, Kartchain will enhance the following tasks involved in a supply chain-
- Recording the quantity and exchange of assets – like pallets, trailers, compartments, and so forth – as they move between supply chain nods
- Tracking purchase orders, receipts, change orders, shipment notifications, and trade-related documents
- Assigning or verifying certifications or certain properties of goods such as to determine whether the food item is organic or fair trade
- Linking physical goods to serial numbers, RFID, digital tags, barcodes etc.
- Sharing information with suppliers and vendors about the manufacturing process, assembly, delivery, and maintenance of products
Benefits in a Nutshell
Irrespective of the application, Kartblock’s blockchain based supply chain product will offer the participants of a supply chain the following advantages:
- Enhanced Transparency. Documenting a product’s journey across the supply chain uncovers its origin and touchpoints, which expands trust and helps eliminate the bias found in the present opaque supply chains. Manufacturers can likewise decrease recalls by sharing logs with OEMs and regulators.
- Greater Scalability. Any number of participants can access from any number of touchpoints
- Better Security. Using a shared, indelible ledger with codified rules one can potentially wipe out the audits required by internal systems and processes.
- Increased Innovation. Opportunities abound to create new, specialized uses for the technology because of the decentralized design.
Being early adopters of blockchain technology, Kartblock has been investigating further the advantages of leveraging blockchain technology in adjoining territories, for example, introducing smart contracts, conveying more meticulousness to purchase order payments or demand chains where “real-demand” signals can propagate the upstream supply chain faster.
While we salute the power and the promise of blockchain technology, we exhort the supply-chain world to set aside the opportunity to quantify its suitability against other, perhaps less difficult, and less expensive innovations.
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