March 30, 2017 | Written by: Catherine Palmer
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Waiting for a package to be delivered can be frustrating. Deliveries mostly happen during work hours, so customers often miss the delivery window, then worry that their packages aren’t safe.
To make online shopping more convenient, the Singaporean government created a nationwide system of delivery lockers from which the public can retrieve packages ordered online.
FreshTurf, a technology company in Singapore, sought to create a secure way of making these lockers available to any delivery company wishing to use them. Think of it as the Uber of delivery lockers.
To create the solution, FreshTurf teamed up with IBM Garage developers and designers to build a blockchain-distributed ledger platform prototype on the IBM Cloud platform. The blockchain solution is designed to manage transactions between merchants, logistic vendors, locker companies and consumers.
“As a startup, we wanted a partner and mentor who would guide us through the journey of adopting blockchain and building with cloud, while also helping us to grow,” says Jarryl Hong, co-founder, FreshTurf. “During the IBM Design Thinking workshop, we had access to technical expertise, consulting and guidance through working with the IBM Garage, which allowed us to quickly build our concept.”
It’s a groundbreaking use of blockchain technology. Blockchain has been readily embraced by the financial services sector, but applying it to the logistics industry has opened up a world of possibility for the technology. FreshTurf intends to see just how far it can take it.
“With this unique solution in development, we’re hoping to secure pilots with a number of industry leaders to test the feasibility and market readiness of the solution in other industries as well,” says Kevin Lim, co-founder and director at FreshTurf.
Using IBM Cloud has given the FreshTurf team the necessary level of agility to build quickly. “Because we’re working on the IBM cloud, we are able to quickly test and deploy various use-cases,” says Lim. “Building with IBM has allowed us access to technical expertise to build products and solutions to scale quickly.”
The solution is a win for customers and delivery companies. Door-to-door deliveries are difficult to perform and add to the cost of delivery, which ultimately drives up prices for consumers.
“We’re creating a marketplace where delivery points such as apartment complexes can provide locker space and anyone can rent them,” says Lim. “This means greater island-wide access to lockers and better utilization of lockers for the delivery point providers. Consumers have more choices and logistics companies can utilize these assets to simplify the ‘last mile’ of delivery.”
Learn more about IBM Blockchain.