14 December 2011
A record attendance of over 173 people from across the globe attended the event across two days and we were happy to see a number of business cards exchanging hands, particularly at our dinner on Monday night that was held at the fabulous surroundings of the Asian Civilizations Museum.
The audience at Connect 11, was brought up to date with our latest product developments including e-invoicing and supplier value reports with the session concluding with an excellent panel debate about the future of maritime software and e-commerce.
The SmartShipping event saw delegates listen to a stellar cast of visionaries from the shipping industry including leading owners, shipmanagers and ShipServ CEO Paul Ostergaard on how the sector can become more efficient, reduce costs, improve performance and stay compliant.
The speakers and panellists were quick to agree that smart shipping is not a single, revolutionary idea or concept that is going to transform the industry – but is a combination of innovative thinking, technologies and processes combined with a greater understanding of the human element.
But the audience was told that the biggest stumbling block to any implementation is the internal culture of shipping companies.
Rajaish Bajpaee, CEO of Bernhard Schulte Shipmanagement, said:
“Smart Shipping is about driving innovation and creating value for customers. Technology, processes, people are enablers, but the real driver is the mindset of creating value for customers and driving innovation.”
“Too many companies go down just the basic compliance to regulations route, but these only meet minimum standards and do not provide the required value for customers. Corporate leadership must drive a corporate ‘Smart DNA’ to add value,” he added.
Evidence of smart initiatives in practice were given by a variety of speakers in the ‘Drivers of SmartShipping’ session including how container giant Seaspan has changed its vessel design through its SAVER programme and how shipbuilder Oshima Shipyard has developed its ECO-ship strategy.
Case studies of fuel efficiency programmes recently undertaken were given by Rune Steen, president and CEO of Masterbulk and Jan Øivind Svardal, VP of project development for Grieg Shipping.
“Providing all stakeholders with key metrics and full analysis is vital to get full management buy-in and keep momentum for SmartShipping initiatives,” said Mr Svardal.