Canadian Shipper


Maersk partners with Microsoft, EY on maritime insurance blockchain

The group has created a blockchain platform built on Microsoft Azure technology for shippers, brokers, customers and third parties in the maritime insurance industry that is slated for rollout in 2018.

London, UK — Danish shipping conglomerate A.P. Møller-Maersk A/S, has partnered with consultancy EY, data security firm Guardtime, Microsoft and four other firms to develop a blockchain-based marine insurance platform.

The blockchain platform — built on Microsoft Azure global cloud technology — is positioned to provide significant value to the insurance industry and is planned to be implemented from 2018 onward. The first of its kind in the insurance industry, the platform’s initial phased rollout will involve deploying the benefits of blockchain for end-to-end use across the marine industry.

The global blockchain platform connects clients, brokers, insurers and third parties to distributed common ledgers that capture data about identities, risk and exposures, and integrates this information with insurance contracts. The platform’s capabilities include the ability to create and maintain asset data from multiple parties; to link data to policy contracts; to receive and act upon information that results in a pricing or a business process change; to connect client assets, transactions and payments; and to capture and validate up-to-date first notification or loss data.

“Blockchain’s potential to transform the insurance ecosystem has always been clear,” said Shaun Crawford, EY Global Insurance Leader. “What we have done is to move forward from potential to reality. This solution is the first to apply blockchain’s transparency, security and standardization to marine insurance and is ready for commercial use. We look forward to deploying this technology across the marine insurance industry and are exploring how these findings and insights will be applied to other specialty insurance markets and beyond.”

The blockchain platform supports the marine insurance industry to address the challenges of its complex international ecosystem involving multiple parties, long paper chains and duplication, high transaction volumes and significant levels of reconciliation — all potentially preventing transparency, compliance and accurate exposure management. The blockchain platform connects disparate data and processes to address and mitigate the issues associated with reconciliation and error applicability.

“It is a priority for us to leverage technology to streamline and automate our interaction with the insurance market,” added Lars Henneberg, A.P. Møller-Maersk A/S Head of Risk and Insurance. “Insurance transactions are currently far too tedious and frictional. The distance between risk and capital is simply too far. Blockchain technology has the potential to facilitate the desired development that is long overdue.”

Insurers can use this blockchain platform to improve their capital and gain efficiencies, with increased transparency and reduced manual data entry or reconciliation and administration costs.

“The KSI blockchain stack is a proven technology for securing the physical, software and information supply chains that enterprises rely on for the integrity of their businesses.” said Mike Gault, Guardtime CEO. “We are thrilled to be collaborating with EY to expand the number of real-world customer problems solved with our technology. Guardtime’s technology and deep domain knowledge from EY represents a formidable combination for customers looking to solve hard problems with blockchain technology.”


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