MTI Rolls Out First Blockchain Project For Global Shipping Industry

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UK company Marine Transport International (MTI) is deploying  the world’s first public Blockchain solution in the global shipping industry. An industry-leading freight forwarder based in the United Kingdom and the United States the company provides sophisticated, technology-based freight forwarding solutions for global shipping companies worldwide.

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MTI is using the TrustMe public Blockchain technology and the services from predictive analytics expert Black Swan Data Limited. The technology will be used within its SolasVGM product offering to enable the secure and open dissemination of shipping container information.

Public Blockchain technology will connect the supply chain together, in a way which the industry has never seen before. Furthermore, trust and partnership is reinforced with the Blockchain, in an industry where such principles can at times be misunderstood.

”Blockchain has the ability to empower our industry into a true digital age. Instead of a VGM message being delivered sequentially to parties within the supply chain, our platform can provide a decentralized approach to delivering VGM messages. The sheer volume of containers processed per year means that safely decentralizing the management of these containers will radically reduce the complexities of shipping. A grass roots approach in collecting and storing information on the Blockchain is how shippers will be able to reap the full benefits of the technology. We are now a public Blockchain company and our focus is on delivering tangible benefits to global trade and all the actors within the supply chain,” said Jody Cleworth – CEO of MTI.

It will allow companies to build efficient business ecosystems between supply chain parties or actors in the public Blockchain. The Blockchain will also accelerate the flow of data distributed between parties, whilst at the same time reducing reliance on the typical IT architecture that plaque companies today.

“Sectors such as banking and FinTech are attracting a lot of attention for their steps to adopt Blockchain. But what we have here is an example for the shipping industry leading the way in executing a real, proven application of Blockchain. We’re incredibly excited to be at the forefront of this development,” added Antony Abell – MD of TrustMe.

With millions of transactions processed each day in the shipping industry, the public Blockchain will not only increase data efficiency, but also provide long term savings for EDI transmission (Electronic Data Interchange) dependent companies.

Since 1st July 2016, Contracting Governments to the International Maritime Organization’s SOLAS treaty (International Convention for the Safety of Life at Sea) have been required to implement new requirements related to the Verified Gross Mass (VGM) of packed containers. The new regulation puts the responsibility on the shipper to ensure that an accurate VGM is provided to the terminal/carrier for every container loaded prior to it being allowed to be shipped on-board on a vessel.

Using the TrustMe solution, VGM data is stored on the global Blockchain, providing a permanent records visible to port officials, shippers and cargo owners. This replaces cumbersome logs, spreadsheets, data intermediaries and private databases. Previously, data has been deeply ingrained in old legacy systems. This causes delays in the development of new capabilities, hindering the ability for carriers to make rapid changes to services.

The Blockchain is a data structure makes it possible to overcome these issues, creating a permanent digital public ledger of transactions which can be shared among a distributed network of computers. It uses cryptography to allow each participant on the network to add to a record on the ledger in a secure way without the need for a central authority. Designated parties can record and retrieve data from anywhere in the world using mobile phones, tablets and PCs, eliminating the need for costly, proprietary infrastructure.
Blockchain data is verified, immutable, and globally accessible, making it a perfect technology for solutions like the SolasVGM product.

Richard Mann – COO of Black Swan:

“MTI continues to innovate and disrupt Maritime industry. We have been working closely with the MTI team for over 8 years and are delighted to see the direction they are taking at a time when regulatory change is creating significant opportunity for new business models in the industry. In the face the regulatory change, MTI did not see an obstacle, but an opportunity to think outside of the box, future-proof itself and ultimately stand out from its competitors. The convergence of SolasVGM™ and the TrustMe™ Blockchain technology further reinforces this. We are excited with MTI’s approach to this and are eager to see what comes next.

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About Richard Kastelein

Founder and publisher of industry publication Blockchain News (EST 2015), a partner at ICO services collective Token.Agency ($750m+ and 90+ ICOs and STOs), director of education company Blockchain Partners (Oracle Partner) – Vancouver native Richard Kastelein is an award-winning publisher, innovation executive and entrepreneur. He sits on the advisory boards of some two dozen Blockchain startups and has written over 1500 articles on Blockchain technology and startups at Blockchain News and has also published pioneering articles on ICOs in Harvard Business Review and Venturebeat. Irish Tech News put him in the top 10 Token Architects in Europe.

Kastelein has an Ad Honorem - Honorary Ph.D. and is Chair Professor of Blockchain at China's first Blockchain University in Nanchang at the Jiangxi Ahead Institute of Software and Technology. In 2018 he was invited to and attended University of Oxford's Saïd Business School for Business Automation 4.0 programme.  Over a half a decade experience judging and rewarding some 1000+ innovation projects as an EU expert for the European Commission's SME Instrument programme as a startup assessor and as a startup judge for the UK government's Innovate UK division.

Kastelein has spoken (keynotes & panels) on Blockchain technology in Amsterdam, Antwerp, Barcelona, Beijing, Brussels, Bucharest, Dubai, Eindhoven, Gdansk, Groningen, the Hague, Helsinki, London (5x), Manchester, Minsk, Nairobi, Nanchang, Prague, San Mateo, San Francisco, Santa Clara (2x), Shanghai, Singapore (3x), Tel Aviv, Utrecht, Venice, Visakhapatnam, Zwolle and Zurich.

He is a Canadian (Dutch/Irish/English/Métis) whose writing career has ranged from the Canadian Native Press (Arctic) to the Caribbean & Europe. He's written occasionally for Harvard Business Review, Wired, Venturebeat, The Guardian and, and his work and ideas have been translated into Dutch, Greek, Polish, German and French. A journalist by trade, an entrepreneur and adventurer at heart, Kastelein's professional career has ranged from political publishing to TV technology, boatbuilding to judging startups, skippering yachts to marketing and more as he's travelled for nearly 30 years as a Canadian expatriate living around the world. In his 20s, he sailed around the world on small yachts and wrote a series of travel articles called, 'The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Seas' travelling by hitching rides on yachts (1989) in major travel and yachting publications. He currently lives in Groningen, Netherlands where he's raising three teenage daughters with his wife and sailing partner, Wieke Beenen.

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