This 1001 startup ideas article from YoStartups is to start a Blockchain based Supply Chain Solution which can streamline the entire supply chain process. Blockchain supply chains are resilient and not vulnerable to cyber-attacks due to its decentralized model, thus aiding business continuity.
Market Definition – Blockchain based Supply Chain Solution
Based on a study from IHL Group, overstocking and out-of-stocks, cost a total loss in revenue of $1.1 trillion to retailers globally. Out of which 1/3rd of the total loss is attributed to lousy forecasting systems, as they rely on manual intervention for the flow of data for systems to talk to each other and predict demands. Another issue is managing suppliers with offshore manufacturing sites contributing to delay in delivery or not being able to fulfill the order.
According to a report published by Justyna Lewandowska, Ph.D. Poznań School of Logistics, Poland, supply chain inefficiencies have resulted in the following problems globally;
225 billion dollars of excess inventory across global supply chains, 10% distribution losses, product defects, loss of production time and increase in logistic costs due to unutilized shipping space.
Competitor Analysis – Blockchain based Supply Chain Solution
IBM and Maersk have already built a blockchain based solution on hyperledger fabric to record paper trail of all the shipments on Maersk Shipping, bringing in transparency and secure exchange of data among the trading partners. They have already finished a pilot with Schneider Electric, moving their goods from Port of Rotterdam to Port of Newark on a Maersk Vessel with support from the Department of Customs from Holland and US.
In another pilot, Damco, Maersk’s supply chain solution company has validated the origin of shipments coming into the port of Rotterdam from Kenya, Colombia, and California.
One Network has developed a multiparty network for trading partners to interact with each other using their ERP software, messaging services, and electronic data services. Their system can bring together multiple trading parties at once but will display data only permissioned to them. So the company has integrated its platform with Blockchain Calling it ONE Chain, with all the original platforms security and permissions. This platform will use EThereum or Hyperledger’s open source code to make it platform agnostic for faster implementation.
A London based start-up that is helping consumers and retailers trace the origin and journey of the goods they buy, ushering in a new era of transparency by separating ethically /organically produced products from others and empowering customers to make an informed purchase decision.
Pain Point and Target Audience – Blockchain based Supply Chain Solution
IBM estimates that the value of the total global trade is around $20 trillion, which is a significant part of the worldwide GDP. It also estimates that more than 50% of the total traded goods travel in containers, and the cost of shipping documentation can go up to 15% of the total shipping cost because each shipment generates about 200 interactions throughout its entire journey passing through nearly 30 people for verification and approvals.
So IBM along with shipping major Maersk is building a blockchain solution platform based on the open source Hyperledger blockchain to digitize the paper trail of tracking goods reducing delays in tracking and container movement.
At any point of time, there are around 30,000 suppliers that supply parts to Apple, Samsung and other major manufacturers and in these high volume businesses, the cash flows are restricted by the ability of the system to validate data in real-time. And as the cash dries up, so does the supply due to production delays. So Foxconn has sponsored a blockchain platform called ChainFinance with Diarong as its P2P lender to solve funding delays plaguing the manufacturing industry due to the inconsistency of production, goods tracking data’s availability real-time across the different layers of suppliers.
Other platforms like Everledger, Provenance are trying to trace the origin, the journey of raw materials, manufacturers, etc. to enable transparency and empower customers to buy more ethically produced goods.
Value proposition – Blockchain based Supply Chain Solution
After the pilot project conducted by Maersk and IBM to track the delays in the movement of traded goods, it was estimated that if the current tracking systems were to be replaced with a more efficient system like blockchain, the global trade volumes could increase over 15% contributing to a 5% increase in overall GDP numbers.
Cashflow problems in manufacturing industries can be resolved as manufacturing data is updated real-time and made available to all trading partners on a blockchain. Autoenforcing SmartContracts can be used to release payments after completion of manufacturing event and goods moving to next stage.
Blockchains can help customers, supplier, trading partners to track the entire journey, movement and origin of goods and raw materials used to manufacture goods, Various levels of access controls can be set to control the information what each user can see. Thus making the whole process transparent, empowering, and meaningful.
Large businesses can use this real-time data for procurement transactions to negotiate better deals based on the total ecosystem volume and use P2P lending integrated with SmartContracts to securitize all monetary transactions.
Blockchain supply chains are resilient and not vulnerable to cyber-attacks due to its decentralized model, thus helping in the continuity of business without interruptions.
Business Model – Blockchain based Supply Chain Solution
The proposed start-up will have to offer its product on SaaS (Software as a service) preferably on a Pay as You Go Model, where the clients will be charged only for the resources used from the blockchain to complete transactions, review information, and track data.
Way to Market for 1001 Startup Ideas – Blockchain based Supply Chain Solution
The proposed start-up will have to ensure that the platform is designed on an opensource blockchain platform like Ethereum or Hyperledger to provide interoperability among the platforms in the future.
The start-up will have to create a platform parallel to the company’s internal ERP systems and start migrating the legacy data to the new platform, to ensure that the data on the new platform is available and updated consistently. Then the startup will have to start onboarding other B2B service providers like logistics, suppliers to ensure, there is data exchange real-time. In the last phase, the company will have to integrate all the stakeholders including the end consumer to unlock the full benefits of the blockchain.
Milestones for 1001 Startup Ideas – Blockchain based Supply Chain Solution
The prototype should be completed within the first quarter of inception. The data migration from the existing platform to the blockchain should complete in the second quarter and the onboarding of vendors and suppliers of different service providers in the third quarter. In the fourth quarter, the platform will be tested for interoperability with other platforms and the consistent flow of data real-time for different platforms.
After the first year, the product will be made available to the end users to enable transparent traceability and tracking real-time.
Investment Needed for Prototyping of 1001 Startup Ideas – Blockchain based Supply Chain Solution
The proposed start-up can raise investments from blockchain specific accelerators like IBM Blockchain Founder Accelerator, DC Blockchain Center, The Synechron Blockchain Accelerator for Trade Finance. The startup can use some of the existing blockchain platforms provided by these accelerators to build on to get faster speed to market.
Team Capability for 1001 Startup Ideas – Blockchain based Supply Chain Solution
Investors/Expert Take for 1001 Startup Ideas – Blockchain based Supply Chain Solution
The blockchain is said to be the second generation of the digital revolution that creates the “Internet of Value.” It is estimated that the blockchains can transform supply chains that impact about two-thirds of the worlds, $75 trillion GDP. However, for this to happen the information associated with supply chains will have to be liberated into a more open environment like a blockchain. Once the supply chains share data on the block chains, they will become more efficient by enabling real-time tracking for better cashflows, and better decision making. With the possible integration of blockchain with big data analytics and machine learning, organizations will be able to map, operations, human resources, and capital assets to create more value out of the entire network.
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