Following the invitation of the testing and consulting organisation EY, GS1 Austria and its subsidiary Editel Austria will participate in the “Blockchain Logistics Initiative” together with well-known logistics companies such as DB Schenker and LKW Walter as well as the association Bundesvereinigung Logistik Österreich (BVL) and the Vienna University of Economics and Business (WU Vienna).
The initiative has the goal of implementing a joint pilot project to review the benefits of blockchain transport and logistics technologies. This first application has been defined and is about digitising freight documents. The point is that freight documents are mostly paper-based and therefore often uncontrolled in their handling and handover.
In workshops, the participants of the initiative will track and analyse a solution to digitise some freight documents using blockchain technology. This should ensure the availability, access and further processing of the documents at all times and for all participants in the process. This industry solution is intended to automate around 75 million processes at Austrian logistics companies each year and thus save 12 million sheets of paper.
Gerd Marlovits, Managing Director of Editel Austria GmbH, explains why Editel became involved in this initiative: “Even if blockchain will not replace existing EDI processes for the time being, it offers us a good opportunity to gain important insights as an EDI provider and exploit synergies. We would also like to incorporate these into our future solutions.”
GS1 Austria’s Managing Director Gregor Herzog is convinced that “blockchain technology for storing data also has disruptive potential for logistics and supply chain management.” The accompanying developments are therefore extremely relevant for GS1 Austria as a data hub.
Following an analysis and the pilot phase in 2019, the project is expected to turn into a commercial platform by 2020. The industry solution based on blockchain should bring cost reduction, transparency, security against counterfeiting and time and resources savings and will be extended to more partners.