The Australian arm of PwC, an accounting powerhouse with over 200k employees and a $36 billion annual revenue, has teamed up with the Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ACCI) and the Port of Brisbane to develop a new system that uses blockchain technology to enable greater supply chain efficiency.
The new venture called ‘Trade Community System’ which aims to digitalize supply chains and track international cargo in real time. The new platform could save the global shipping industry billions of dollars a year by replacing the outdated systems for tracking cargo and getting approval from customs and port authorities.
PwC is one of the famed Big Four tax and accounting companies in the world, which also includes Deloitte, EY, and KPMG. It was the second mega professional services company to offer its clients the possibility of settling their invoices in Bitcoin.
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PwC isn’t the first Big Four firm to adopt Bitcoin payments as Ernst & Young (EY) already enabled its clients last year to pay for products and services using the decentralized cryptocurrency. Also, other professional services have been eyeing this trend for quite some time as Bitcoin, and other established cryptocurrencies have now been more broadly accepted as forms of settlement.
Blockchain for Supply Chain and Logistics
Meanwhile, the pro-crypto push may not only aim to lower transaction costs for its advisory services but seems part of a wider strategy to promote the developments of digital products. Specifically, PwC is taking it a step further by advising customers about crypto funds and investments, cryptocurrency exchanges and fundraising through token sales, or ICOs. This will include advisement on new processes, risks, regulatory policy, and tax guidelines.
Commenting on the news, PwC Partner, Ben Lannan said: “The Trade Community System proof of concept is the first stage in building an innovative end-to-end supply chain that will digitise the flow of trading information, improve connectivity for supply chain participants, reduce friction for business and reduce supply chain costs, providing unprecedented productivity gains for Australia’s international businesses.”
Port of Brisbane CEO, Roy Cummins, added: “To drive new efficiency gains, industry leaders need to develop mechanisms which facilitate the integration and interoperability of commercial operators across the supply chain and logistics sector.”