This Week in Logistics News (October 30 – November 3, 2017)

My car crossed the 90,000 mile mark this week, which means something (or everything) will soon start to break down, like how I started needing reading glasses when I crossed the 45 year old mark.

I’m bringing the car into the shop this morning for some proactive maintenance (translation: I’ll pay some money now to hopefully avoid paying a whole lot more money later).

But before I head out, grab your reading glasses and check out the supply chain and logistics news that caught my attention this week:

Almost two years ago I predicted that blockchain would make its debut it supply chain management, and activity in this area (along with the hype) has certainly increased since then. In the past month, for example, we’ve seen the following headlines: “Air France KLM is Evaluating MRO Potential for Blockchain” and “TMW Systems Becomes Charter Member of Blockchain in Trucking Alliance.” And from March of this year, “Maersk and IBM Unveil First Industry-Wide Cross-Border Supply Chain Solution on Blockchain.”

Now comes news from SophiaTX, “the first platform to focus on integrating blockchain with SAP and other major ERP, CRM, and SCM systems to expand the possibilities of enterprise applications with the trust and security that comes with blockchain technology.” Here are some more details from the press release, along with an overview video:

The platform can be thought of as three components. It consists of a blockchain built on DECENT’s proprietary blockchain technology, (specifically developed and enabled to power a B2B transaction engine); a development platform with integration APIs to SAP and other enterprise applications; and a marketplace. The platform is fueled by SPHTX token which is used to cover mining and transaction fees, allow access and subscription to the development platform and marketplace, buy and sell assets or micro-assets & services, and allow for in-app purchases.

As I stated recently, a lot of supply chain and logistics executives are intrigued by blockchain, yet they don’t really understand what it is or how it works. Is this a technology in search of a problem? Is it really a better mousetrap than what exists today? Will it be the new technical foundation for Supply Chain Operating Networks? A lot more education and selling needs to take place in order for blockchain to gain traction in supply chain management — and this includes convincing supply chain software vendors on the merits of blockchain too, many of whom are taking a “wait and see” approach at the moment. Has the time come for them to go and do?

And with that, I’m out of time. Have a happy weekend!

Song of the Week: “Live in the Moment” by Portugal. The Man

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