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Leading Tech, Telecom, Pharma, Beverage and Manufacturing Companies Collaborate with IBM and Chainyard to Simplify Supply Chain Management Using a New Blockchain Network

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Anheuser-Busch InBev, Cisco GlaxoSmithKline, Lenovo, Nokia, Schneider Electric and Vodafone to Tackle Supplier Information Management Challenges

IBM and Chainyard today announced Trust Your Supplier (TYS), a new blockchain network designed to improve supplier qualification, validation, onboarding and life cycle information management. Anheuser-Busch InBev, Cisco, GlaxoSmithKline, Lenovo, Nokia, Schneider Electric and Vodafone are founding participants alongside IBM in the network and share a common goal of solving challenges related to supplier information management. IBM's industry expertise and Chainyard's product capabilities building on IBM Blockchain Platform have brought this solution to market.

Traditional methods of managing suppliers often involve cumbersome manual processes, which make it difficult to verify identities and track documents like ISO certifications, bank account information, tax certifications, and certificates of insurance throughout the lifecycle of a supplier. By using a decentralized approach and an immutable audit trail built on blockchain, Trust Your Supplier is designed to eliminate manual time-consuming processes and help reduce the risk of fraud and errors, ultimately creating frictionless connectivity across supply chains. By 2023, blockchain will support the global movement and tracking of $2 trillion of goods and services annually, according to technology research firm Gartner Inc.*

"Blockchain has the ability to completely transform how companies onboard and manage their supplier network for the future," said Renee Ure, Chief Supply Chain Officer for Lenovo's Data Center Group. "Through Trust Your Supplier, both buyers and suppliers will the see the procurement benefits of blockchain through reductions in cost, complexity and speed."

Trust Your Supplier creates a digital passport for supplier identity on the blockchain network that allows suppliers to share information with any permissioned buyer on the network. Blockchain ensures a permissioned based data sharing network. This should help reduce the time and cost associated with qualifying, validating and managing new suppliers while creating new business opportunities among suppliers and buyers. Third-party validators, such as Dun & Bradstreet, Ecovadis and RapidRatings provide outside verification or audit capabilities directly on the network.

The Trust Your Supplier blockchain network can also connect existing procurement business networks by relaying necessary supplier data required for exchanging Purchase Orders and invoices, without the need for suppliers to enter it in multiple different networks and automating on-boarding process to those networks. The IBM Supply Chain Business Network can connect to Trust Your Supplier using open industry programming interfaces for access to existing verified supplier information.

"Working with IBM and Chainyard on this blockchain initiative represents a great opportunity for Nokia to further enhance our suppliers' experience and optimize the onboarding process," said Sanjay Mehta, Vice President Procurement, Nokia. "Using the latest technology to address a classical challenge will be of benefit for everyone, and further increase the speed of using innovative solutions."

IBM has over 18,500 suppliers around the world and will begin using the Trust Your Supplier network initially onboarding 4,000 of its own North American suppliers over the next few months. IBM Procurement projects a 70 to 80 percent reduction in the cycle time to onboard new suppliers, with a potential 50 percent reduction in administrative costs within its own business.

The Trust Your Supplier network is currently in limited availability with existing participants with plans for commercial availability later in Quarter 3 of 2019. TYS is built on the IBM Blockchain Platform hosted on the IBM Cloud.

About IBM Blockchain
IBM is recognized as the leading enterprise blockchain provider. The company's research, technical and business experts have broken barriers in transaction processing speeds, developed the most advanced cryptography to secure transactions, and are contributing millions of lines of open source code to advance blockchain for businesses. IBM is the leader in open-source blockchain solutions built for the enterprise. Since 2016, IBM has worked with hundreds of clients across financial services, supply chain, government, retail, digital rights management and healthcare to implement blockchain applications, and operates a number of networks running live and in production. The cloud-based IBM Blockchain Platform delivers the end-to-end capabilities that clients need to quickly activate and successfully develop, operate, govern and secure their own business networks. IBM is an early member of Hyperledger, an open source collaborative effort created to advance cross-industry blockchain technologies. For more information about IBM Blockchain, visit https://www.ibm.com/blockchain/ or follow us on Twitter at @ibmblockchain.

*Source: The Future Supply Chain. The challenges and technologies
shaping the future supply chain https://www.ibm.com/downloads/cas/DZKEVME3

*Source: Gartner Predictions for the Future of Supply Chain Operations in 2018 https://www.gartner.com/smarterwithgartner/gartner-predictions-for-the-future-of-supply-chain-operations-in-2018/

The IBM business model is built to support two principal goals: helping clients succeed in delivering business value by becoming more innovative, efficient and competitive through the use of business insight and information technology (IT) solutions; and, providing long-term value to shareholders. The business model has been developed over time through strategic investments in capabilities and technologies that have the best long-term growth and profitability prospects based on the value they deliver to clients. The company's strategy is to focus on the high-growth, high-value segments of the IT industry. The company's global capabilities include services, software, hardware, fundamental research and financing. The broad mix of businesses and capabilities are combined to provide business insight and solutions for the company's clients.

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