Landmark Group and HSBC execute dual-platform blockchain transaction


June 19, 2019 | By RetailME Bureau

Middle Eastern retail conglomerate, Landmark Group and HSBC bank have completed a first-of-its-
kind transaction that connected two independently-built blockchain platforms, proving their
interoperability and showing how collaborative technologies can further accelerate international trade
in the future. It also marks a major step forward in the Middle East’s retail industry adopting
blockchain.

The transaction involved a shipment from Bee Dee Industries in Hong Kong to Babyshop. A Letter of
Credit (LC) was issued by HSBC using the Voltron platform and Landmark Group’s initiated
ReChainME platform enabled seamless connectivity with its logistics partners at both ends of a key
trading corridor.

This meant that all the key participants along the logistical supply chain could view documents and
track progress of the shipment in real-time, thereby reducing the overall time to complete the
transaction by up to 12 days, a 40% reduction. It also helped reduce the need for paper, as retail
supply chains typically involve large numbers of paper documents that are screened and updated at
multiple touch-points.

“We saw the promise of blockchain technology and embarked on the journey. This is a huge
milestone for us at Landmark Group. Embracing new and emerging technologies like blockchain in
our physical and financial supply chain not only aids in improving speed to market efficiency but also
reflects our commitment to driving transformation in the retail sector and ultimately creating value for
our customers. As a leading retail organisation in the Middle East, we’re proud to have taken the lead
in this area,” said Rajesh Garg, group chief financial officer, Landmark Group.

“We have seen several advancements in digitising trade, each with their own specialist network for
secure communication, resulting in disparate ‘digital islands’. The challenge lies in connecting these
digital islands to create a cohesive network, and this is where blockchain comes in. Being able to
connect two complementary blockchain platforms is a significant milestone in the development of this
technology. It also speaks to the dynamism and interoperability of Voltron,” added Sunil Veetil,
regional head of trade at HSBC Middle East, North Africa and Turkey. “In a world where businesses
are increasingly positioning their supply chains across several markets, blockchain platforms will
undoubtedly give them a competitive advantage by increasing the velocity of trade without
compromising on privacy and security.”

Voltron is a distributed ledger trade finance platform which digitises the LC process from application
through to document presentation. HSBC has previously facilitated four major LC transactions with
this technology across its global network, but this is the first time Voltron has been connected to a
complementary blockchain platform, and the first time Voltron has been used to issue a LC between
the UAE and Hong Kong.

ReChainME is a permissioned blockchain platform initiated by Landmark Group. It ensures seamless
connection amongst key participants involved in the transaction, resulting in greater transparency and
accountability.

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