- One stop shop for marine industry -

B2B is doing what B2C started a long time ago

People are used to using web-based solutions in their private life over the years since Internet and web-shops have matured. It is pretty safe to say that you are one of the persons who are already used to using different online tools in your private life. The reason for saying this so confidently is because it applies to most of the people.

Taking example from consumer businesses

Nowadays companies are able to serve their clients’ needs better by utilizing modern Internet solutions, information reachable by web-services and being active in the online world. Many shops and services are available easily online without the loss of precious time and energy, regardless of time of day and place. What once was consumers searching for a physical place to buy goods is now searching for the product itself. Why search for a company that makes or sells coffee makers, when you can search for the coffee makers themselves and find multiple solutions from different companies to take your pick? It is easy to understand, if thinking about the standards of today. The demand for these kinds of solutions is easy to see, when simply reflecting your own life. Intensive work life, pressure to accomplish in short time and price-consciousness are rather common characteristics for today’s individuals.

The individuals meet this same phenomenon at work. Professionals work with tight time schedules and tight budgets which create constraints but still the tools remain quite the same. This is the case at least in the industries where processes have stayed the same for decades. Old and proven methods create certain standard and sometimes it is hard to see outside the box.

Change is nothing new – it’s constant

Telex and its later version telefax revolutionized the ways of written communication in the modern business world especially when they were a norm in the 80’s. Later, Internet and emails enabled mass delivery of information. This lead into environment where we are today, the amount of data and accessible information is enormous. For an individual, this mass of information might create difficulties in chaos-like information flood. However, the more mature Internet becomes, the better the information can be filtered. Like consumer’s way of shopping, business information can also be handled in an effective way.

How does it translate to a niche industry?

Maritime industry is a business, where standards and regulations give strict directives to shipbuilding and ship operations. Material manufacturers, sellers and service providers need to know and follow these regulations in order to serve the industry. Sourcing and selling in this special niche industry has been expensive and time consuming in global and scattered environment. This has caused, in some cases but not always, an overlapping value chain, which creates higher costs and consumes time and loss of information in the process. Transparency, easy access to verified information, concentrated marketplace and low cost tools, which are well known and proven in the business to customer -environment, can help even in the business to business environment.

Like a home owner, who wants to source for a new home, an industrial buyer should have a free tool to make sourcing easy and fast. Homeowners go to geographically selected portal, or in global business, to a niche portal such as vacation home portal. The buyer usually is prepared to spend money and therefore should have a free access to data given by those who have products and services to sell to the buyer in need. An open marketplace, with as low transaction costs as possible can create the transparency and efficiency needed. Supply can meet demand, without non-value adding middlemen. Looking at the value chain with holistic perspective, the value is added by the manufacturer of a product and the service is given.

Our solution

Keeping these simple needs in mind, we have created a modern solution to arrange the data in the industry. SHIPSU is a web-based service, which has many roles in the maritime industry. It is an open marketplace for the shipbuilding and marine operation professionals. Open information about products and services with references and specifications like in a web-shop usually seen in business to customer sales, SHIPSU creates transparency in a unique way.

For a company making purchases in the field of maritime industry, tools like this makes it possible to source for even the most customized solutions from a large global network of providers. On the other hand, providers of maritime services and products can have a cost-effective tool to meet the demand. In addition, collecting big data from different operations done in the internet and in the service can be beneficial, when used properly for customers. Naturally the change to a completely web-based sourcing solution can take a while and, that is why also a professional team available to aid in the sourcing process is needed behind the service.

SHIPSU has a consistent goal to be the world’s largest database for maritime industry products and services with nearly 100 000 products to be sourced by a network of nearly 75 000 buyers in thousands of industry’s recognized organizations. This will not happen in weeks or months, but follow us to see it happen in the near future.

Mikko Varjanne

Chief Operational Officer, M.sc Econ, Bachelor of Hotel, Restaurant and Tourism Management, In maritime industry since 1998

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