Multinational telecommunications company Vodafone is exploring blockchain’s capabilities to improve its supply chain.

By integrating blockchain into its internal processes, Vodafone aims to advance its supply chain by promoting and verifying a number of suppliers through a digital identity platform dubbed Trust Your Supplier, the company announced on March 6.

To implement diversity criteria

The announcement further explained that the company is implementing criteria for diversity “to influence procurement decisions alongside other standard criteria, such as safety, value, delivery and technology when we invite suppliers to tender for business.”

Trust Your Supplier was jointly developed by tech giant IBM and blockchain company Chainyard last summer. Alongside Vodafone, the network’s founding members include tech companies Cisco, Lenovo, Nokia, Schneider Electric and British pharmaceutical company GlaxoSmithKline, among others.

The platform aims to eliminate time-consuming manual processes and help reduce the risk of fraud and errors.

Telecom sector embraces blockchain

Telecom companies around the world have been gradually deploying blockchain even beyond their supply chains. Telefonica reportedly partnered with the local Association of Science and Technology Parks to grant access to its blockchain to about 8,000 firms in Spain.

South Korea’s largest telecom company, KT, was set to launch a local blockchain-based currency for one of the country’s largest cities, Busan, on Dec. 30. At the time, it was noted that participants can use the “currency at any store in Busan with a credit card terminal,” although compatibility will reportedly be less common among larger retailers in an effort to encourage spending at smaller local businesses.