Blockchain Traceability Overtakes Payments Among Major Corporations

Multi-billion dollar companies are more likely to use blockchain for traceability and provenance than for payments and settlement, according to a new analysis of the Forbes Blockchain 50.

The now annual Blockchain 50 list was published in late February and includes fifty of the biggest brands in the world who are using blockchain, each with annual revenue in excess of $1 billion in annual revenue.

Research from Dutch firm Blockdata, which incorporated its own data in the analysis, found that fifteen have solutions that tackle traceability and provenance, while 13 are using blockchain for payments and settlements.

Companies with blockchain traceability solutions include IBM, Nestle, Foxconn, Honeywell, Walmart, Amazon, BMW and Mastercard. Ten of the products are already in production, while five are pilot schemes. Use cases are spread across agriculture, mining, aerospace, food and automotive industries.

Hyperledger and Ethereum

IBM’s Hyperledger technology was the most widely used for traceability, followed by Ethereum — however, a number of companies use multiple blockchains or distributed ledgers.

Blockdata’s analysis cited iPhone and Playstation contract manufacturer Foxconn’s use of blockchain technology as a notable example. It is streamlining financing via its Chained Finance platform for its suppliers, many of whom are small to medium enterprises. It also highlight’s IBM’s contributions:

“IBM, backers of the Hyperledger blockchain project and its many platforms, makes an appearance because of the Food Trust initiative. This program allows companies to quickly and accurately ascertain the provenance of individual goods in its supply chain. Notable participants include Walmart, Nestlé, and Dole Foods.”

However, as Forbes transportation contributor Steve Banker cautioned in his recent report about Food Trust, just because blockchain is now being used widely in traceability does not  necessarily mean it will be a success. He wrote:

“Once the retailer…

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