SaaS-based logistics and field service management startup LogiNext Solutions, which has significant operations in Southeast Asia, is planning to integrate blockchain in supply chain for better visibility, connectivity and security, its Founder and CEO Dhruvil Sanghvi told e27.
He believes that the project, which connects supplier, shipment companies, load point, customs and terminal on a shared blockchain ledger, has far-reaching consequences for the logistics industry.
LogiNext is already piloting the blockchain project with two large organisations in the US and Singapore.
“Blockchain has a great theoretical implication on the logistics industry because ultimately supply chain will need to have greater visibility,” he said. “We are doing a side project at LogiNext where we are trying to deploy blockchain in logistics. We have two large organisations piloting this with in the US and Singapore, and we are looking to launch the enterprise version of this technology as a part of our solution in the next six to eight months. We want to be the first company in the globe to implement blockchain in logistics.”
According to Sanghvi, since blockchain is a technology where information is not centrally stored and data is stored across distributed ledgers instead, the data cannot be altered and so is visible to all the stakeholders on the blockchain. These individual nodes need no validation and cannot be centrally controlled. All parties involved in the supply chain benefit from automated data flows as the system allows complete interoperability of data sources.
“Now let us talk about why this is so relevant and can be implemented in logistics. Logistics is a chain of activities where various stakeholders come together and move goods or shipments from one place to another. Just that these points are not linearly distributed but there are physical locations and nodes spread across geographies and multiple fleet owners, third-party logistics firms, delivery companies, freight aggregators come together to make goods move across these nodes,” he elaborated on the new project.
For example, he continued, the daily consumer goods comes to the nearest retailers or e-commerce shipments come to your doorsteps after following a complex chain and touching multiple nodes. Now, the biggest challenge in logistics is to keep all these stakeholders, nodes and end customers on the same page. This whole movements also need various data points like shipment location, temperature data, weather data, and traffic data — all of which can be stored in a distributed ledger being maintained at each of these nodes.
“This is nothing but a practical implementation of blockchain, so that not a single entity has to maintain these data points and keep everyone up-to-date, but all these distributed ledgers do the job on their own,” he elaborated.
Sanghvi also feels in Southeast Asia, Internet of Things (IoT) and Big Data analytics are the next big things in logistics. “They are more realistic technologies and these technologies are already used in different industries.”
He also believes that it is at least 15 to 20 years away before driverless cars and drones hitting the logistics segment in Southeast Asia.
India- and US-based LogiNext, which has operations in Singapore, Thailand, Malaysia and Indonesia, is looking to further expand in the regions, and is in talks with multiple investors in the US and India to raise Series B round of funding.
Started in 2013, LogiNext helps brands and logistics companies improve their internal operations, optimise delivery networks and provide good customer service using data collection, advanced analytics and visualisation. It uses technology to provide real-time visibility and optimisation solutions, helping them avoid delays, incorporating transparency, real-time tracking to get unique insights about moving assets, distribution networks, inventory and supply chain.
The company is currently working with nearly 150 customers, including DHL, Godrej, DHL, Coca Cola, Hitachi, P&G, and Lion Parcel.