Dun & Bradstreet, an American business services company that provides financial and other corporate data about public and private companies, is currently testing a blockchain-based service for vetting partners and conducting transactions in trade finance, built on the decentralized Ethereum network.
According to Saleem Khan, vice president of data innovation at Dun & Bradstreet, using blockchain technology, this new project will allow Dun & Bradstreet to confirm trade finance transactions faster than with traditional methods commonly used by banks, shippers, suppliers and other parties involved in such partnerships.
Companies buying, selling and shipping products to each other today typically exchange many paper documents for such items as loans and bills of lading using traditional systems. Dun & Bradstreet wants to change this by migrating a version of financial supply chains to a blockchain-based leger, allowing partners to confirm their identities and the terms of contracts through secure, immutable digital records stored on the company’s blockchain.
Customers can now access a pilot system with a subset of data about 6,500 public companies. The blockchain system matches with DUNS numbers to a unique blockchain identifier code, created for each company. Khan also mentioned that the possible future use of the system would include advisory services where the company would suggest compatible trading partners for customers based on analyzing data from blockchain.
According to Saleem Khan, customers can now access a pilot system with a subset of data about 6,500 public companies that matches DUNS numbers to unique blockchain identifier code that is create for each company. DUNS is the proprietary code Dun & Bradstreet assigns companies it covers. This system allows client companies to verify information about potential partners “instantaneously”.
Although there is no definitive timeframe for the formal launch of this blockchain-based system, the development will continue and several financial services companies will test the in the coming months.