US retailers ramp up blockchain tech investment

Scott Thompson

Blockchain spend by the US retail sector increased 103.1% during 2018 to reach $112.4 million, according to ResearchAndMarkets. From 2019 to 2025, meanwhile, spend is expected to record a CAGR of 43.9%, increasing from $208 million in 2019 to $2.6 billion by 2025. The main areas of investment will be: Product tracing and counterfeit goods Billing and payment Claims and settlements Virtual warranty management Contract management Supply chain management Further info here. Asset tracking Annual revenues from blockchain retail asset tracking will hit $4.5 billion by 2023, according to Juniper Research. Blockchain’s versatility offers retailers the likes of transparency in the supply chain, customer loyalty management and operational efficiencies, leading to faster adoption than in other sectors, the company says.

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Blockchain spend by the US retail sector increased 103.1% during 2018 to reach $112.4 million, according to ResearchAndMarkets.

From 2019 to 2025, meanwhile, spend is expected to record a CAGR of 43.9%, increasing from $208 million in 2019 to $2.6 billion by 2025. The main areas of investment will be:

  • Product tracing and counterfeit goods
  • Billing and payment
  • Claims and settlements
  • Virtual warranty management
  • Contract management
  • Supply chain management

Further info here.

Asset tracking

Annual revenues from blockchain retail asset tracking will hit $4.5 billion by 2023, according to Juniper Research.

Blockchain’s versatility offers retailers the likes of transparency in the supply chain, customer loyalty management and operational efficiencies, leading to faster adoption than in other sectors, the company says.

Retailers are opting for different deployment approaches, it notes. Some (such as Alibaba and JD.com) are launching their own BaaS (Blockchain-as-a-Service) platforms, while others (including Walmart) have opted to partner with specialist providers.

Juniper forecasts that the number of retailers using the technology in the US alone will grow by over 7,500% between 2018 and 2023 to reach nearly 15,000 by the end of 2023.

Leading vendors

Juniper assessed 17 blockchain vendors, scoring their level of agility, presence and innovation, on the complexity of their solutions and prospects in the field. It ranked the five leaders in the space as follows:

1. IBM
2. Digital Asset
3. NEM
4. Applied Blockchain
5. R3

Walmart

Blockchain consortium Hyperledger recently published a case study detailing how Walmart is “leading unparalleled transparency in the food supply chain”.

The retailer tested many approaches to tackling this challenge before turning its attention to blockchain. Two Proof of Concept (POC) projects, one in the US and one in China, solidified its commitment to the technology and Hyperledger Fabric. It is now leading industry-wide adoption with a coalition involving the likes of Nestle and Unilever.

Check out the case study here. It includes the a step-by-step account of Walmart’s roll-out, from embracing the general idea of blockchain to selecting a core technology to planning the POC projects and taking the system global with partners. It also features tips from Frank Yiannas, former Vice President of Food Safety at Walmart, on rolling out an enterprise blockchain project.

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