3 Stocks to Gain From Blockchain's Retail Reach

Manaswita Ghosh Dutta

The global retail market may be the ultimate space to benefit tremendously from blockchain technology’s real-world implementation. More industries are realizing the potential of blockchain outside the crypto currency market, which is not only a fast, secure and accurate system, but also doesn’t burn a hole in corporate pockets.

Growth Prospects of Blockchain in Retail Market

According to Markets and Markets data, blockchain in retail market is poised to reach $2,339.5 million worldwide by 2023.

The market is expected to witness a compound annual growth rate of 96.4% in 2018-2023, with North America holding the largest market size.

Why Blockchain is the Ultimate Solution for Retail

It is no surprise that blockchain’s robust architecture has been noticed by the retail industry, a domain known for its notoriously huge logistics and complex supply chains. The need for extremely secure and swift transactions makes the technology popular in the retail space.

Blockchain’s efficiency lies in decentralizing data storage. This system stores information in a peer-to-peer manner, thus providing security to the data because it can’t be tempered with. Apart from the secure mode of data storage, blockchain also allows retailers to gain from each other’s purchase data without sharing it directly.

Blockchain’s unchangeable, easily accessible records make supply chain management faster. This allows customers to track products through the entire process, and thus improve brand-customer relationship. In addition, the real-time data stored improves logistical efficiency thus making shipment-tracking easier.

Among other benefits, blockchain improves inventory management, identifies issues sooner and lessens paperwork delays.

3 Stocks to Gain

As more top retailers set out to explore the technology, it would be prudent to invest in a couple of stocks that stand to benefit directly from the growing trend.

Starbucks Corporation SBUX is poised to explore blockchain technology to track coffee from “bean to cup” with Colombian, Costa Rican and Rwandan farmers. The coffee giant aims to improve traceability by sharing real-time information.

Starbucks has a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy) and its expected earnings growth rate for the current year is 12.4% compared with the Zacks Retail – Restaurants industry’s projected rise of 3.9%. Its Zacks Consensus Estimate for current-year earnings has risen 3% in the past 60 days. You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank stocks here.

Carrefour SA CRRFY is aiming to enhance its products’ traceability with blockchain technology. The French company is implementing blockchain technology to track its free-range Carrefour Quality Line Auvergne chickens, which is a major product of the supermarket chain.

Carrefour has a Zacks Rank #2 and its expected earnings growth rate for the current year is 13% compared with the Zacks Retail – Supermarkets industry’s projected decline of 2.4%. Its Zacks Consensus Estimate for current-year earnings has risen 4% in the past 60 days.

Walmart Inc. WMT uses ready–to-use blockchain technology in its live food business, a Bloomberg report cited. The system has been developed in collaboration with International Business Machines IBM in order to boost supply chain efficiency. The company is also using blockchain for payment processing.

Walmart has a Zacks Rank #2 and its expected earnings growth rate for the next year is 5.3%. Its Zacks Consensus Estimate for current-year earnings has risen 0.6% in the past 60 days.

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