supply chain

(Photo by Odd ANDERSEN / AFP)

Maersk simplifies its supply chain with emerging technologies

When it comes to the supply chain for logistic companies, technology plays a very important role today. As the demand and competition for better services increase in the industry, most of the players in logistics are now competing to make the most of the technology available to them to ensure they are able to remain competitive.

The supply chain of the shipping industry is one of the biggest in the world. Over the years, it continues to face numerous challenges, be it from a pandemic, geopolitical tensions, or even natural disasters. Disruptions in the industry have led to high amounts of losses.

On any given day, 85 million packages and documents are delivered globally, with 80% of the total trade volume moving by sea. Faced with such a large (and increasing) workload, two-thirds of logistics companies acknowledge they still need to transform their operations to keep up.  As such, shipping companies now rely on emerging technologies to ensure they can be well prepared to deal with any incidents and the increase in volume.

One company that is making the most out of technology is Maersk. The iconic corrugated steel shipping containers are familiar all over the world, stacked atop freighters, piled high in ports, and pulled on tractor-trailers as they complete their journey from one end of the supply chain to the other.

Founded in Svendborg, Denmark more than a century ago, the logistics giant has grown to become one of the most valuable publicly traded companies in the world. Today, its vast logistics network spans 130 countries and moves tens of billions of dollars worth of goods around the world each year.


Part of the success is because the company has adopted technology faster compared to its peers. This includes supply chain technologies and even automotive tools for its administrative work.

With the pandemic bringing a whole new working lifestyle, Maersk recognized the need to revamp its infrastructure. As part of its modernization strategy, Maersk partnered with Stripe for a critical element of its operations which was international payments. The company’s global business is intrinsically complex, with banking requirements, currencies, and preferred payment methods all varying from region to region.

“We started on this journey a few years back because we knew it was the future, and we wanted to modernize and serve our customers better. We had to make it simple for people to ship and track their orders from one end of the world to the other with a click of a button,” said Navneet Kapoor, chief technology and information officer at Maersk.

“Creating a payments system that allowed this flexibility was an essential piece of the puzzle. We found that Stripe had the right modern infrastructure, and was the right global partner, to help us get there,” added Kapoor.

Prior to partnering with Stripe, Maersk’s payments operations were fragmented across multiple providers. This included one for tokenization, another for payments processing, and a third for managing security authentication. Juggling several solutions which were not always interoperable introduced needless friction into an already complicated setting.

Through the partnership with Stripe, Maersk combined these disparate systems into a single, agile payments portal. Maersk customers are now able to pay seamlessly through an intuitive dashboard that supports payment methods that Maersk previously could not accept, like credit cards. The portal also adapts to regional banking requirements and provides international customers with localized point-of-sale experiences.

“Local prioritization is essential to meeting our customers’ needs. From the start, and during incredibly pivotal points, Stripe ensured our infrastructure works seamlessly across multiple markets,” said Kapoor.