BIC and DCSA collaborate to standardize container facility identification and digital access

Press Release

BIC (Bureau International des Containers) and DCSA (Digital Container Shipping Association) today announced completion of their collaboration to standardize the codes used to identify facilities such as depots, container yards, M&R vendors and other supply chain container facilities.

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Digitalisation of Chinese Freight Industry – research report

Opinion Piece

A research report by Paul Zhang, Founder & CEO of FreightPaul, a Chinese digital freight forwarder explores the digital landscape among Chinese freight companies including the various digital tools used by these companies..

The report outlines the process of digitalization in the freight industry of China and how usage of digital tools such as cloud computing, data analytics, and artificial intelligence techniques is enhancing the service of transportation and speeding up the process of movement of goods from warehouses and factories to the final consumers.

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Fonterra completes first blockchain trade transaction using Wave’s BL

Press Release - Shipping and Freight Resource

Fonterra, one of the world’s leading international dairy processors, has completed its first e-presentation for a shipment from New Zealand to China using WAVE BL’s blockchain-based technology with HSBC as the banker.

This fully digital end-to-end Letter of Credit presentation, in which digital documents were cryptographically signed and presented using WAVE BL’s platform, is an example of the regular flow of documents between companies and banks during the international exchange of goods.

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Contour partners with CargoX to transform bills of lading

Press Release on Shipping and Freight Resource

Contour, the Singapore-based global trade finance network has today announced its partnership with CargoX, a blockchain platform for transferring documents and data including a certified electronic bill of lading solution.

The news follows Contour’s transition to full production, with the network supporting electronic bills of lading as part of digital transformation of trade.

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The ROI of integrating visibility into your door to door supply chain

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Integrating visibility into your supply chains is no longer a luxury, but has become a necessity – especially considering the intermodal activities that are required in the global market place of today..

Since the time the need for real time visibility and the accrued benefits came to light (just under a decade ago!), there has been a huge rush and demand from customers who are clamoring for more information – they want more data, more visibility and quickly..

Customers today require authentic and visual data to see how their products are moving, identify bottlenecks in their supply chain, and correct for where avoidable costs like demurrage, detention and storage are being incurred..

Ocean Insights & FourKites will be discussing all of the above and more, in a webinar titled, “The ROI of Integrating Visibility into Your Door to Door Supply Chain”..

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Product Review : Centersource Platform

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Timber is one of the most common and popular forestry products shipped around the world, in various forms, using general-purpose ships, specialised log carriers, and also in containers..

The global export value of just Sawn Timber Softwoods (one of many different types of timber and forest products) is reported to be around $22 billion out of a total forest product export value of around $270 billion..

Due to the nature of the commodity, timber is usually moved in large quantities across various trade lanes and there are several processes to be followed for the shipment..

Right from order placements, creating the required documentation, transferring the same, booking the cargo with the lines, monitoring the movement of the same and ensuring the supply timelines are met, there are many intricate processes involved..

Many of these processes are still done manually, which results in inefficiencies in the business..

As per industry research, people spend a lot of their daily time on below points

  • 40% of their time trying to calculate CIF prices for the product
  • 25% sending offers
  • 65% drafting documents
  • 40% sharing information and trying to stay up to date
  • 20% tracking and tracing their shipments
  • 80% of those interviewed said they use Excel or Shared Folders to organise their shipment deals and files
  • 100% said they communicate using phones and email
  • 100% rely on free-tools (not always the most reliable) to track shipments
  • 64% of the respondents said sharing or collecting market updates is their largest problem

What if there is a platform that says you can do all of the above seamlessly and more efficiently..

As per Centersource, their Timber Exchange platform can do all of the above and even save you money while doing it.. Here is my review of their platform..

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How to achieve cost saving through digitalisation in shipping

Opinion Piece

Digitalisation is the use of digitisation (the transition from an analog format to a digital format) and digital technologies to convert your business to a digital business..

Digitalisation has been the buzzword in the shipping and freight industry in the last decade.. Its influence and coverage in the industry is increasing day by day..

Apart from the increase in efficiency and speed to market, one of the main advantages of digitalisation is cost saving..

There are several areas where cost can be saved using digitalisation.. Central among this cost saving opportunity is Time which is an important commodity and when it comes to shipping and freight, time is really money..

Digitalisation can assist customers a great deal in terms of saving cost on avoidable costs..

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The role of ship agents and shipbrokers in a digital shipping environment

Shipping and Freight Resource Press Release

Ship agents and shipbrokers have been active in the industry since the beginning of commercial shipping and that coffee shop in London and have been playing an important role in the provision of services to various ship and cargo owners..

Digitalization is now changing the environment in which ship agents and also ship brokers operate, and we are seeing new and adjusted services emerging as ship agents and shipbrokers continue to strive to enhance service levels and provide added value to their principals..

This article by Mikael Lind, Research Institutes of Sweden (RISE), Jonathan C. Williams FICS, FONASBA, Sue Probert, UN/CEFACT, and Juan Carlos Croston, Manzanillo International Terminal (Panama) takes a look at how the traditional roles played by the ship agent and shipbroker might change in this digital shipping environment..

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Using blockchain to mitigate risk in container operations – a researcher’s perspective

Opinion Piece

The theory is that an adopter of technology will not be eager to join in because the technology looks fancy. A difficulty that Blockchain is struggling to address is that its true potential might only be realized when everyone is on board, but the benefits it brings back might not be visible to all or is not tangible.

The managing board expects the providers to show them how their solution would help them make money while ensuring an acceptable level of risk, not how much they have to pay to join in another platform that they have to add to their collection of systems to be maintained.

The role of CIOs and CTOs is therefore critical to make his/her company become an educated buyer in this emerging market.

A recent study by Son Nguyen, Peggy Shu-Ling Chen, and Bill Yuquan Du at Australian Maritime College, University of Tasmania, Australia revealed the potential of the increasing complexity of system management and the emerging of multiple-event risk scenarios originated from the information flow of the industry.

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Product Review : Ocean Insights’ ocean freight visibility platform

Product Review by Shipping and Freight Resource

Global sea trade has been trading blind for centuries because once the ship left the port of load with the goods, there was very little visibility on the whereabouts of the ship or the condition of the cargo till it arrived at the destination..

Historically, the shipping and freight industry has been slow to adopt new technologies and standards, unlike its airborne cousin which is highly standardized and regulated internationally..

The advent of containerisation and intermodalism, made ascertaining the whereabouts of a container all the more difficult because containers move to remote locations with relative ease using a combination of rail and road options..

With the exponential increase in the movement of container volumes around the world, it would be impossible to meet all the requirements of the customer using manual processes..

There has been a noticeable acceleration in the digitalisation of the industry in the last decade and this digital evolution is set to shape the future of the industry..

As much as the industry needs to embrace the digital evolution and the competitive advantage it can provide, there are several challenges as well.. It is more than just about getting together the required hardware and software and converting a paper based model to a systems based model..

It requires innovation.. Innovation is not a product but rather a culture that needs the right people following the right methodology using the right tools with the right thinking..

One company that presents innovation as being at the heart of its service offering is Ocean Insights – Innovators in Container Tracking..

Here is my review of Ocean Insights’ container freight visibility platform and what the industry can expect from this platform..

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TT Club’s signposts to a digital future

Press Release - Shipping and Freight Resource

Leading freight transport and logistics insurer TT Club is reflecting the evolving digital landscape in its new logo and revamped website. Increased accessibility to data, information and streamlined processes are the key aims of the insurance specialist’s investments in digitisation.

Although COVID-19 has accelerated digitalisation, TT had already embarked on its path to digital transformation.

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Blockchain transaction capacity and speed boost for shippers as Shipchain’s ‘MAINNET’ goes live

Press Release - Shipping and Freight Resource

Complete supply chain transparency, unprecedented security, and the transactional capacity to serve the needs of even the largest Fortune 500 and Global 500 companies are all now possible following the launch of ShipChain Mainnet.

This launch is a significant milestone toward achieving a modular system across the entire supply chain.

With all the uncertainties in the world today, it gives supply chain decision-makers the incentive to move from considering how blockchain might be used in global supply chains to realizing its evident promise across transport modes and continents.

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The future of pharma and medical supply chains in the COVID-19 era

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Supply chain is often described as the vital and crucial link required to get the product from the manufacturer to the market place for ultimate consumption by the consumers..

While this is a simple enough definition or explanation, it is not as easy as it sounds, especially in specialised industries like Pharmaceuticals..

ShipChain is bringing together some of the experts in the supply chain and pharmaceutical industries to understand the past, present, and future challenges for pharma and medical supply chains in the COVID-19 era..

The expert panelists will examine how supply chains will need to adapt in order to weather the storm caused by this pandemic and the future of pharmaceutical and medical supply chains..

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DCSA Publishes Standards for Digital Exchange of Operational Vessel Schedules

Press Release - Shipping and Freight Resource

Digital Container Shipping Association (DCSA), a neutral, non-profit group established to further digitalisation of container shipping technology standards, in conjunction with its nine-member carriers, today published standards for the exchange of operational vessel schedules (OVS).

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Product Review : Haven Inc’s TMS for global shippers

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In any sea freight transaction which covers the above processes, there are challenges that BCOs and/or Freight Forwarders face in terms of managing Rates, Bookings, Documents and Visibility..

As per market studies, 25-30% of all freight invoices issued are erroneous and that businesses have been overpaying service providers for years due to incorrect invoices.. In a $350 billion ocean freight market, this accrued revenue loss can be quite significant..

Now Haven Inc, a solutions-focused TMS provider is aiming to simplify the processes for the customers through their easy to use and intuitive app-based TMS platform specifically aimed at international shippers..

The platform is said to have proven successes with some of the largest companies in shipping including Top 5 CPG, and Top 5 US Exporter using it..

Here is my review of Haven Inc’s TMS platform..

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