Global shipping major UPS was accepted as member of the Blockchain in Trucking Alliance (BiTA) as of early November 2017. BiTA is a Blockchain consortium that is mainly focused on the trucking and shipping industry.

In its announcement, the consortium claimed that UPS will assist in the development of standards around the use of Blockchain in systems used to track or monitor packages, facilitate payments between shipping parties and other industry applications.

According to UPS director of enterprise architecture and innovation, Linda Weakland, there are several possible applications of Blockchain that the company plans to explore when it joined the consortium like improving the efficiency and transparency of shipping transactions.

"The technology has the potential to increase transparency and efficiency among shippers, carriers, brokers, consumers, vendors and other supply chain stakeholders."

Other UPS projects involving Blockchain

Before joining the consortium, UPS has already launched several projects to explore the possible use cases of the technology in its customs brokerage business. The plan of the company is to use the technology to shift away from its largely paper-based processes and establish a more efficient, shared platform that can also be used by its customers and third-party associates.

In supporting the development of standards around Blockchain, UPS claimed that it aim to promote logistics strategies that allow its customers to participate in global trade and finance.

Brief profile of BiTa

BiTa was introduced in August 2017 with a goal to use Blockchain technology in the trucking industry. In his statement then, BiTA cofounder Craig Fuller of TransRisk claimed that the alliance was established to develop standards around Blockchain applications in the sector.

“We formed the Blockchain in Trucking Alliance to develop common standards around Blockchain applications in the trucking industry, from speeding up transactions to securing data transfers. The technology holds great promise, but to encourage its proliferation, we believe that developing industry standards were paramount. PS Logistics brings a depth of industry experience and full-service logistics knowledge to help our industry innovate with integrity through this new technology.”