The entities include Xiamen Port Holding, Sany Heavy Industry, Jinko Solar, New Ocean Line, Zhejiang Seaport Investment and Operation Group, Shanghai Yiyun International Logistics, Giant Logistics Shenzhen, Shanghai Hantang Logistical Service, Tianjin Yunguagua Supply Chain Management, and Guangzhou Port, TradeLens said in a statement, reports IHS Media.
The expansion into China, which TradeLens first announced in early May, was facilitated by a partnership with China Unicom Digital Tech, a telecommunications company that hosts and operates TradeLens in mainland China, making it available to global and domestic exporters and importers in the country.
'You need to have that partnership in place in China, and they allow connectivity to Chinese partners,' Michael White, CEO and head of TradeLens, GTD Solution, said. 'China's such an important trading partner of so many shippers. This provides direct access to network partners and customers in China and allows us to make sure information is updated directly by whoever is directly in charge of the cargo, whether it's trucking providers or terminals in China.'
The advancement into China caps a first half of 2021 that has seen uptake of the TradeLens platform grow, company officials said. TradeLens is adding four to five new shipper or forwarder customers per week, on average, spokesman Benjamin Haddock said.
It also comes as TradeLens, a joint venture between Maersk and IBM, seeks to build a unique position in a market for shipping and trade data that is becoming increasingly competitive and well capitalised. Chicago-based visibility provider project44, for instance, which raised US$300 million in venture capital in the past six months alone, has also signalled its intent to grow its footprint in China.
Shipment visibility is one of the core offerings of TradeLens, a joint venture of world's-largest ocean carrier Maersk and technology giant IBM, along with collaboration tools that lets customers interact with suppliers or cargo facilities in a permissioned data sharing environment.
Mr White said establishing a presence in China gives TradeLens a level of differentiation from its competitors in that it has access to first-party data from many of the service providers and container facility operators in the country, a list it expects to continue to grow in the future. TradeLens provides that data either through an information feed designed to support other systems, a product it calls Essentials, or through its own web portal, called Visibility.
'Connecting to the TradeLens platform is an important opportunity for Xiamen Port to expand our information service capabilities,' Zhaohui Chen, vice general manager of Xiamen Port Holding Group, said in the statement. 'Ports play a pivotal role in the area's logistics. By integrating with TradeLens, it will allow us to improve operational efficiency and empower each other to support supply chain participants domestically and abroad to enhance the control of logistics dynamics.'