Accenture launches blockchain-based supply-chain solution in Thailand

25 October 2018 3 min. read

Accenture have launched an innovative blockchain solution in Thailand, developed in conjunction with Bank of Siam subsidiary Digital Ventures.

Global professional services firm Accenture teamed up with Digital Ventures, a fintech subsidiary of Siam Commercial Bank – the oldest and one of the largest banks in Thailand – to co-develop the blockchain-powered procurement supply-chain solution, described by Accenture as “the world’s first fully integrated procure-to-pay solution on the Corda open-source platform from enterprise blockchain software firm R3”.

The digital procurement solution allows for the simplified buying and selling of goods, obtaining finance, and arranging inbound and outgoing payments, and was created with local conglomerate SCG – the oldest and largest cement and building material company in Thailand – with the solution already in use handling transactions with certain SCG suppliers and reportedly delivering efficiency improvements.

“The most exciting part of the blockchain solution is that the outcome is so tangible: the efficiency improvement, the cost reduction and the convenience that all stakeholders have experienced with this platform,” said Accenture’s Financial Services practice leader for ASEAN Divyesh Vithlani. “This successful outcome is a powerful testament of the collaboration we have with our clients, while delivering value in the market at speed.”Accenture launches supply-chain blockchain solution in ThailandAccording to the firm, the Procure-to-Pay (B2P) solution was developed using design thinking, agile methodology and DevOps principles, in addition to micro-services and cloud technologies, with Accenture and Digital Ventures completing the design and implementation in only five months with the support of R3 – together overcoming a number of technical challenges including the integration of multiple systems for purchase orders, receipts, invoices and payments.

“This is a breakthrough technology that offers a lot of value,” said Digital Ventures CEO Orapong Thien-Ngern, a long-term former Managing Director for Accenture in Thailand. “Given that most supply chains involve a large number of suppliers, the complexity of integrating and reconciling all the different systems from each of the companies can be a costly, daunting and time-consuming task. Blockchain enables parties to securely share all the information without the need for extensive integration between their various technology systems.”

In addition to the solution improving efficiency in procurement activities, Accenture notes the enhanced transparency for all parties engaged along the procurement supply-chain, along with a reduction in the potential for human error or fraud and the overall cost savings through the elimination of physical billing – eradicating the need for millions of paper invoices per year. The solution will also allow for integration with Thailand’s e-tax invoice programme.

Further applications

And procurement is just the beginning. “We expect to be able to scale this innovative blockchain solution and leverage it for other functions beyond just procurement, including order-to-cash, international money transfer and trade finance,” Vithlani said. Accenture has since announced two further solutions which enable allow interoperability across distributed ledger platforms Digital Asset and R3 Corda and Hyperledger Fabric and Quorum.

“This is a game-changer that can help accelerate adoption of blockchain technology,” Accenture managing director and Global Blockchain Lead David Treat said of the revolutionary solutions. “The key challenge was to develop the ability to integrate without introducing ‘operational messaging’ between distributed ledger technology platforms in order to stay true to the principles and benefits of blockchain technology.”