Be wary of immature blockchain solutions
Be wary of the blockchain hype; while it has the potential to revolutionise the port industry, you need to cut through the noise to find solutions with real staying power, essDOCS co-founder and chief executive Alexander Goulandris told TOC Europe delegates.
Mr Goulandris advised ports that the benefits of blockchain are still unproven, but Silicon Valley’s increasing interest in shipping and ports has led to a flood of blockchain-related solutions, leading to confusion on the appropriateness of overlapping technologies.
“Blockchain definitely has the potential to completely disrupt things - there's no denying that - but it is most useful where you are able to revolutionise your business,” he said. With every blockchain provider creating their own platform, Mr Goulandris predicted a “bloodbath” this year as companies with failed blockchain solutions start to go bankrupt.
More broadly, he suggested that port operators focus on digitalisation solutions that are already in operation, rather than jumping on pilots. Once operators have found a suitable digital solution, they should prove them on a small scale before rolling them out across the company.
“Small stealth projects do not work and C level support is vital,” he said. “Move slowly, digitalisation takes time. If you rush you will fail and then you will lose the faith of the C levels.
“The biggest problem with the digital transformation is change management.”
He described introducing digital trade as “an elephant that needs to be eaten in bite size chunks.”
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