Wirecard Uses Blockchain to Bring Mobile Payments to Supply Chain

June 19, 2018         By: Steven Anderson

We commonly think of mobile payments as being a B2C proposition; something strictly between businesses offering goods and services and consumers paying for them. We sometimes don’t consider that businesses are consumers too, and so, there’s the whole B2B sector to think about. Wirecard recently tipped us off about its new blockchain-based service that would add a new payments option to supply chain operations.

Wirecard’s new tools provide what amounts to a high-end global network for supply chain purchases, between the businesses that sell supplies and those that consume supplies to produce finished goods. The system is designed to link merchants and producers directly, connecting all business processes directly through “smart contracts,” which have a direct connection to blockchain operations. That keeps the risk of fraud to a minimum and helps smooth out overall operations.

Such an effort should prove useful; there are still large portions of the world where such transactions—and the data therein—are carried out over paper transactions, like fax machines and mailed or shipped documents.

Wirecard AG’s CEO, Markus Braun, noted “We see great potential in the digitization of payment processes worldwide. Today we can use our years of experience, for example in payment processing within the travel and mobility industry, in which fast transactions to various stakeholders play a major role in bringing this process via blockchain technology to completely new markets – which already have a great demand today. With our worldwide presence, we are in the unique position to meet this need.”

It would be one thing if this just sped up supply chain operations. One good thing, certainly, but just one thing. This not only speeds up operations, it also makes these operations more secure, which helps build reliability throughout the supply chain. It is, effectively, a digital payments system for supply chain operations, and since that can likely be at least somewhat exercised via mobile devices, it’s a mobile payments system of sorts for B2B supply chain operations.

It’s good to see mobile payments branching out into other fields, and this should be the kind of thing that helps simplify and flatten out supply chain operations. Smoother supply chain operations mean fewer delays and smoother cash flow patterns, which is better for everyone involved.