Digital transformation at your port

Digitalization is shaping the future of the transport and logistics industry and is forecast to change the game for mixed cargo ports. To survive, ports must take the first step on the digital ladder.

Technological innovation can help mixed cargo ports keep up with ever-increasing vessel sizes and cargo volumes, along with complex customer demands. But with so many options available, which is the right path to take?

In our latest eBook “Ensure your mixed cargo port’s digital future” we discuss how a TOS can help you work smarter and ensure your port’s survival by investing in digital transformation.

Download it here to learn more about:

  • Realities of moving to a modern, digital terminal operating system (TOS)
  • Opportunities to grow an insights-driven business
  • Factors determining smart ports of the future
  • Criteria to consider when choosing a new TOS for a mixed cargo port
  • Considerations when choosing a new TOS vendor to partner with

Get in touch with us if you would like to know more about how our TOS, Master Terminal can help you get on the digital transformation path.

Invest in your port’s future – get port smart.

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Finding a perfect operating fit for every size

Published by Port Strategy March 2019

Jade Logistics’ Kaustubh Dalvi talks to Port Strategy about the importance of finding a TOS that suits the business requirements, and how the TOS is the core of a port’s operation from which they can provide enhanced levels of efficiency to all stakeholders across their port community.

Smaller Terminal Operating System (TOS) solutions have plenty to offer without the high costs of the big players, says Martin Rushmere.

Adaptability and flexibility plus cost savings are expected today from terminal operating systems. Customers are looking beyond the original wonders that dazzled ports, IT and computing power, to applying the same programme and platform across different cargoes and terminals. Yet a perception still lingers that the software and equipment needed (especially dedicated on-site servers) means a costly and complicated package.

Richard Willis, port operations technical director of Royal HaskoningDHV, puts it this way. “Well-established vendors have a deep range of product functionality, tailored over many years to their clients’ needs, gradually standardising process and creating standard working practices.” He cautions that the installation of a new system “always needs some degree of business change from a non-systemised operation to manage cargo flows and when adopting a well-established TOS the terminal client is recommended to align their practices with the standard product features, to capture the benefits of using the toolkit features. “This is often a sensible approach” says Mr Willis, “but some terminals who have more specialised local needs or variations may benefit from using a TOS company that can be more flexible and engage in product customisations to shape around the client requirements.”

Miami-based Cetus Labs, which has a total of just nine people, is one such TOS provider that bears this in mind, through its Octopi platform. Catering to mixed ports and container terminals of less than 500,000 TEU a year, the system is linked through Amazon Web Services. “Every feature is in the Cloud,” says Miles Varghese, head of sales, “which gives tremendous flexibility, speed of implementation and low cost of installation. Implementation takes four to six months.”

The company sees itself as “the Gmail of TOS”. One of the strategic priorities is to tailor the system to what the customer wants. “We innovate the data to what the customer wants and do not try to convince the terminal operator to buy a readymade product. “We guarantee 99.9% of uptime,” adds Mr Varghese, “and have a huge advantage in being totally based on the Cloud. Caribbean Port Services in Haiti is a customer and Octopi kept working even when that terrible Hurricane Matthew devastated the island.”

Cetus has an iron rule of installing and providing a feature specially requested by a customer only if it can be used by all customers. “We will be up front and we are not going to build something that is not scalable,” says Mr Varghese, “and if it is scalable, we will often install it for free.” Maintenance and repair features have been added, which Cetus says are usually outside the scope of products from large providers, and berthing areas usage/analysis functions have been developed in response to customer needs.

CHALLENGING THE STATUS QUO
Mr Willis sees the marketplace dominated by a few leading companies, but smaller and start-up companies like Cetus are challenging around the periphery, specialising in particular regions or in certain cargo operations, and these companies “cater for those terminals that don’t fit the standard or want to take a more ambitious route to differentiate from local competition perhaps”.

Smaller terminals (arbitrarily 500,000 TEU and less) tend to do a mixture of cargo types and need a TOS that is designed to both manage the cargo variety properly and to equip the terminal with the ability to show greater flexibility to their customers.

“The reality in the market is that although some suppliers may cover the complete range, the buyer should look carefully at the nature of their customers when making a buying decision because each occupies a segment in which they are naturally much better,” says Allan Jones of International Terminal Solutions (ITS). “There are systems that do a better job for the requirements of the smaller terminal,” he adds. “Look for open TOS systems that can communicate with other systems; the TOS is an element of your automation, business intelligence and Internet of Things strategy and will need to work in synergy with specialist systems in this area.”

New Zealand-based Jade sees the TOS as the core of a port’s operation, and the platform from which a port can provide enhanced levels of efficiency to all stakeholders across their port community. President of global sales, Kaustubh Dalvi, notes that from its beginnings in the early 1990s, Jade’s Master Terminal “was designed as a turn-key solution for a marine terminal operator to handle multiple cargo types and have 24/7 support”.

TECH QUESTIONS
All vendors agree that it’s essential to stay abreast of the latest technology, but they disagree on which aspects to concentrate on. Blockchain is possibly the area of most uncertainty.

“We tell clients not to take blockchain too seriously”, says Cetus’ Mr Varghese. “The main focus is to get rid of pen and paper and move to digital methods.”

Jade takes a different view. “Platforms such as this will play a key role in the future of collaboration and sharing of information among supply chain actors. While blockchain is still in its infancy with respect to its place in the global supply chain, Master Terminal already integrates with the CargoChain information sharing platform which utilises blockchain as a means of proofing that all information stored is accurate and unaltered.”

Royal HaskoningDHV’s Mr Willis says the future of technology in terminals will be influenced by pressures from outside the terminal too, with environmental impact and closer supply chain collaboration being important. “Technology, particularly around process automation, machine-led decision making and remote-control equipment, is leading the way, with other cargo terminals learning from this sector and implementing their own solutions tailored to different cargo types. “However,” says Mr Willis, “within bulks particularly, automated operations have been well-established for many years, using equipment control in unmanned operations, with sophisticated stock management and sensor usage.” He sees huge potential from smart ports initiatives for Royal HaskoningDHV’s clients, from data capture and predictive analysis, innovative decision-making support and driving forward a lower-cost, lower-impact operation with the use of technology tools right across the port.

ITS’ Mr Jones believes that a key criterion should be how well the TOS can talk to other systems. “These terms are traditionally associated with larger terminals, but now all have their place in smaller terminals.” He points to the big advances in data availability – even in relatively small operations – and this is only set to increase with IoT. “As an example,” he says, “we have just completed implementation of our PortSpective system in a 250,000 TEU terminal. The system uses our IoT platform on the cargo handling equipment to track it in real-time to provide visualisations of the state of the operation, identify and highlight operational, engineering and safety issues instantly as they occur, and provide very detailed real-time data for both operations and engineering business analysis.”

For Cetus, a principal business approach is to deal with clients that Mr Varghese terms “forward thinking, who can see five to 10 years ahead. We are not comfortable with the ‘if it isn’t broken, don’t fix it’ philosophy.”

View the full article here on Port Strategy.

Container Management talks to Jade Logistics’ Kaustubh Dalvi about TOS adaptability – One size does not fit all

Published by Container Management January/February 2019

Container Management talks to Jade Logistics’ Kaustubh Dalvi about the importance of adaptability in ensuring the successful implementation of new terminal operating systems.

“An in-house terminal operating system (TOS) offers its user full control of both the technical and financial aspects of its operations but, to quote the late Stan Lee, “With great power comes great responsibility.”

Speaking with Container Management, along with T.J. Rucker, President of Tideworks, Mehmet Ali Kayaoglu, CEO of GullsEye and Scott Peoples of Navis, Captain Kaustubh Dalvi (pictured above) emphasized the importance of a robust implementation methodology in a successful implementation. He also offers his opinion on the move towards digitalisation in the maritime industry and the value in sharing data.

Read excerpts below or view the full article.

“Another company that relies heavily on planning to guarantee a successful go-live is New Zealand-based third party vendor Jade Logistics Group, which follows a robust methodology when it implements its own TOS at a new site. First, it begins with the project analysis, then it configures the inside of the system and finally it migrates the data and initiates a go-live. Kaustubh Dalvi, the company’s President of Global Sales, said that it focuses a lot on the planning analysis phase to give users as much visibility as possible on what is going to happen. The company also aims to collaborate on a day-to-day basis to ensure that the go-live remains on track.

MOVE TOWARDS DIGITALISATION

“Recently, a tsunami of digitalisation has hit the market, with blockchain initiatives and artificial intelligence (AI) developments aplenty.

“With all this new technology making waves in the industry, it may be high time that the maritime sector learned to share. Other industries happily share and sometimes even trade data to help fuel innovation, yet companies in the maritime industry have yet to latch onto this way of thinking. Dalvi explained that all this new technology is useless without data and, in order to be successful, data sharing is the key. He told CM: “It’s like buying a Ferrari, keeping it in the garage and not using it.” Dalvi believes that the more data is shared, the more valuable it becomes.

“Jade Logistics as a whole is very keen on data sharing, and in December 2018 it launched CargoChain, its own information sharing platform for the global supply chain. According to CargoChain CEO David Lindsay: “Today’s consumers are demanding trust while those involved in the supply chain require full transparency and visibility.” The platform aims to provide this by integrating blockchain technology and sharing trusted information amongst all actors in the supply chain. CargoChain targets issues of data sharing across the global supply chain and, by providing its platform to application developer communities, aspires to “allow developers to solve the world’s supply

“Dalvi has started to see data sharing happen within the maritime sector and hopes that it will become a much bigger thing in the future. To further encourage the flow of data, he suggested that some of the larger players in the supply chain should start practising what he called “data philanthropy”. This involves companies giving away data for experimentation and innovation, but it is something that is not seen currently in the industry. Still, Dalvi hopes that this will change, as he believes that people have begun to learn and to see the value of sharing data.”

View the full article here on Container Management.

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Jade Logistics makes a blockchain move

Published by WorldCargo News September 13, 2018

Geneva-based CargoChain has developed a cargo information sharing platform that is focused on information sharing though the development of cost effective and rapidly deployable applications, including blockchain. CargoChain was formed out of Jade Logistics, but has been set up as and operates as a separate, independent company.

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“CargoChain’s blockchain solution includes a unique Information Sharing Protocol and deep supply chain functionality that provides the ability to share any type of data, without the restrictions of legacy technology like EDI. The CargoChain Platform also provides tools that allow developers to build and deploy cost-effective applications that solve supply chain problems of any size,” the companies stated.

Tony Davis, Director of Marketing, Jade Logistics Group, explains that all rich cargo information is stored ‘off-chain’ on the CargoChain Platform. “Using Hyperledger Fabric technology, CargoChain stores a hash of all cargo events ‘on-chain’ to their own public blockchain. This approach mitigates the scalability challenges of blockchain when faced with large volumes of rich data, while at the same time providing complete trust in all the information that is stored on the CargoChain Platform.”

Guirec Le Bars, Chief Technology Officer at CargoChain is backing the company to revolutionise supply chain data sharing. “We believe the partnership will revolutionise the way cargo information is shared between global supply chain participants. It will enable the secure distribution of rich cargo information among trusted partners which has previously been unavailable, until now,” he said.

For Jade Logistics, increased collaboration and access to a common set of cargo information are crucial as the logistics industry seeks to drive greater efficiencies and productivity. “With Jade Logistics’ Master Terminal TOS in operation at over 125 terminals worldwide, Jade Logistics and CargoChain are well positioned to play a major role in this exciting new era of global logistics. Both companies will work closely with Jade Logistics’ existing Master Terminal customer base, and their business partners, to assist with their information sharing needs. Initial CargoChain applications are already in development for specific Master Terminal customers as well as pilots for significant supply chain projects.

“As independent players in the industry, Jade Logistics and CargoChain are committed to contributing to a democratised supply chain, that encourages across-the-board collaboration, seamless information sharing, and innovation,” Jade Logistics concluded.

View the original release here on WorldCargo News.

Mobile computing in ports set to accelerate with positive global outlook

Introducing innovations like mobile apps to port operations is one way to achieve productivity gains, improve operational decision-making and maximize revenue opportunities.

Optimism is rising across ports around the globe, on the back of growth in trade and increasing freight rates. For ports it is time to look at ways to apply innovation that will capitalize on this positive growth.

According to a recent article in Port Strategy, world trade is expected to increase from 2.2% growth in 2016 to 3.8% in 2017, with a similar level of expansion forecast for 2018. The article also cited growth in freight rates for Maersk in Asia as a positive reflection of that growth translating into more freight movement.

Port leaders around the world will be looking at how they can position their port to benefit from this growth. Introducing innovations like mobile apps to port operations is one way to achieve productivity gains, improve operational decision-making and maximize revenue opportunities.

While many industries have been aggressively adopting modern mobile apps based on commodity-priced hardware, the port sector has been more cautious. According to port consultant Thomas Vitsounis, writing in Port Strategy:

“In general terms, the use of apps will change the industry and everyone knows that. When it comes to ports themselves, things have so far moved slowly – but there has been a remarkable change. . . . in the past year, it is tremendous how quickly this industry has shifted. Ports are now thinking in these terms. There is some distance to go but it is absolutely essential to move in that direction.”

There are some exciting opportunities to leverage this in your port by applying mobile technology in areas like cargo management, yard logistics, reefer management or rail service integration.

Some risks also exist though: in terms of choosing the best mobile app technology, the right support partner and successfully integrating a mobile approach into your existing IT systems, especially your TOS.

Jade Logistics have prepared a white paper “There’s an app for that” looking at the issues around mobility in ports, and what to consider when building your business case.

Also read the press release about Mexican based Grupo CICE testing and implementing the Master Terminal suite of handheld apps.

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Do you get what you pay for?

Some people love designer clothing but don’t like the price tag that go with them, so you can imagine the appeal with shops offering designer type clothing at lower prices. What is the risk if you buy a pair of shoes that don’t last more than one season? Do you want to be wearing those shoes in a year’s time, or should you pay more hoping they last?

Now apply the same thinking to purchasing a terminal operating system (TOS) and you might find yourself running into problems.  Investing in a TOS is a major investment, which unlike shoes, usually only happens once in a lifetime and must be approached with considerably more thought.

There are many things to be considered when selecting a TOS:

  • Starting with clear business objectives is essential. Will the TOS give you confidence to grow or will you need to adapt your processes to fit the TOS? 
  • Is the vendor reputable, reliable, proven and experienced? Do they offer training and support with a clearly defined research and development roadmap?
  • What is the Total Cost of Ownership?  There are many hidden and ongoing costs to consider, not just the starting price.
  • How quickly will you gain efficiencies and see a return on your investment?
  • What about integration? Is it seamless, or do you need to bring in other vendors, which can open you up to risk.

Would you like to know more? Download our white paper, Investing in Growth to identify some of the key factors to consider before buying a terminal operating system.

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Ports can do more with the resources they have

Growing ports can be more competitive by realizing their break bulk potential. Terminal Operators are continually challenged to increase revenue while faced with extreme competition and demand from customers to do more for less. 

In a recent Port Strategy article, it was reported that increasing pressure to improve break bulk related operating efficiency is posing a serious challenge to operators as demand for machinery, equipment and components to support worldwide commercial projects ramps up.

It was suggested that the most obvious solution to overcome inefficiencies in break bulk handling is investment in facilities and processes, but what are the other options available to smaller ports who do not have the means to buy more land or expensive machinery?

Technology is one answer.

One area where break bulk terminals can make their own quick gains in performance is implementing or upgrading their terminal operating system (TOS), to ensure every possible piece of capacity is extracted from existing infrastructure, delaying the need for costly investment.

A TOS specifically developed to handle a mix of cargo types can enable the port to compete effectively for new business, being equipped to handle more than just containers can vastly improve the bottom line by attracting shippers who handle a mix of cargo types, and give operators the opportunity to do more with the resources they have.

Would you like to learn more about handling break bulk at your port? Download our eBook, Solve complex logistics and cargo challenges.

Increase port yard safety with Master Terminal

How can you avoid employee injuries and fines at your port? 

Consequences of poor port safety: A poor safety record and ill-conceived processes are not only detrimental to personnel, but can result in negative publicity, legal cases, and fines for safety breaches which can severely affect your bottom line.

When an Ellesmere Port man’s hand was crushed at Cammell Laird shipyard, Cammell Laird was fined £400,000 for breaching the Health and Safety at Work Act. Although they had a Health and Safety Management System (HSMS) in place, it wasn’t implemented effectively across the organization.

This is a tragic and timely reminder that only having basic technology in place isn’t enough to create a safe and compliant port. Jade recommends using a three-pronged approach involving technology, people, and communication between the two.

Here are three ways to ensure Health and Safety compliance.

  1. Choose a terminal operating system (TOS) that includes a health and safety component.
  2. Ensure that technology-backed processes to minimize hazards are put in place and followed by a safety-conscious workforce.
  3. Separate machinery and labor in the yard. Port staff who operate heavy machinery need to receive notifications warning them of the areas where they can’t operate.

Regarding the Ellesmere Port incident, the Health and Safety Executive inspector said “If the HSMS had been followed this accident may not have occurred.”

Through working with local ports, Jade recognized the difficulty to action safety procedures. This knowledge led to the development of Master Terminal’s Labor On Block functionality. The guiding principal is that when ‘Labor is On the Block’, machinery is not allowed to enter an area.

Learn about how Labor On Block improves the safety of port yard workers and visitors and ensures procedures are being followed in our Yard Safety fact sheet.

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Investing in growth.

The challenge of growth confronts leaders of ports around the world. You are always looking for new ideas to improve your operation and extract more value from it. Learn how to build a business case for investing in growth.

Are huge capital investments in cranes or automation technologies the only real path to increasing your income? What other options are available to you?

These are the questions leaders of ports ask us on a regular basis in relation to investing in terminal operating system (TOS) software. 

Read the white paper Investing in Growth to learn more about how you can make a real difference to your operation by investing in a TOS.

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Break-bulk logistics industry climbing the technology ladder

Hear what Keith McSwain, Jade’s Vice-President of Client Services has to say about the emergence of IT for break bulk logistics businesses.

While technology drives the containerized supply chain and is responsible for stunning efficiencies and cost reduction, it’s another story with breakbulk. Many in the industry continue to resist investing in information technology, even as the needs become more obvious and the benefits become more apparent. But slim margins are warranting a closer look at IT.

Keith McSwain, Jade’s Vice-President of Client Services recently spoke to the American Journal of Transportation about how logistics businesses that handle break bulk are starting to invest greater time and financial resources into IT.

Read the full article here: The other story: IT’s important to breakbulk

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