For over 100 years, the BMW Group has pushed the boundaries of mobility, creating new realities both within and beyond automotive design.www.bmwgroup.com
The automotive industry, including BMW, relies heavily on partners for flawless execution. A shared view of data between partners is critical for responding to market changes such as Covid. The beauty of Vendia’s technology is that it combines the scalability of serverless computing with the security of distributed ledger technology. This means enterprises can build a data exchange system that scales with whatever project they are working on while ensuring full control over access to their data. Vendia will truly usher in the next generation of data exchange and collaboration across corporate partners.
-Kasper Sage, Partner at BMW i Ventures
Each BMW automobile is built with the help of complex supply-chain services which often include multiple partners. Ensuring consistent parts quality is critical to upholding the company’s vision. In a complex, multi-party supply chain, identifying the source of damage and assigning cost is a time consuming, manual process which is difficult to scale.
BMW’s supply chain is composed of partners with varying degrees of IT and operational capabilities. Some of them have extensive technical capabilities while others may only have access to mobile and web applications. BMW needed a system that could onboard partners swiftly, regardless of their IT capability, and enable them to share data with full control and confidence that it would not be overwritten or manipulated.
Four main criteria were established for the use case in the context of a distributed data exchange:
The business need and use case had already been identified but BMW was hindered by the lack of scalability and maturity among existing cross company data exchange mechanisms.
The Vendia Solution
The solution, built on the Vendia platform, is completely serverless and cloud native; it can scale infinitely. It is based on AWS Serverless services but is able to connect to partners on other clouds, allowing all required partners to participate. The partners share data collected at each handshake in the supply chain but retain control of the data they produce. Most importantly, logistics partners can easily integrate with the solution without a great deal of IT support.
At each inspection point in the supply chain, data such as part details, any defects, photos, and videos are collected with a mobile app. The media files and associated inspection information are stored on Vendia’s cloud native, multi-party database. The data is immutable - it cannot be changed once it is entered into the system, thus ensuring mutual trust amongst the involved parties.
BMW deployed the Vendia-powered solution to track and reconcile defects in multiple parts of their supply chain in 2021. As a result of using the Vendia solution, BMW has better insight into each stage of its supply chains and can better assign costs associated with damages along the line. Moreover, due to the multi-partner, distributed design of the system, all participants in the supply chain are encouraged to participate, leading to greater transparency and improved efficiency for all parties. This gives BMW improved ability to proactively address issues in the supply chain, reducing overall costs, and continuously improving the end-to-end build process.
An additional benefit of the platform is that due to the built-in data verifiability and immutability, analytical datasets can be further compiled with excellent data lineage properties. From this set, the relevant data can then be stored in the BMW Group data lake, also known as Cloud Data Hub. Once there, data scientists are able to cross reference with other production quality data, creating a continuous product improvement cycle, as any bottlenecks are identified proactively, and appropriate measures are implemented.