Narrowing the competition to one, in one minute

David Levy
November 30, 2022

Case study in Maritime Intelligence: How to use OMI to increase revenue

We’ve written about the concept of speed in software before. Speed is the raison d’être for software. Software processes, analyzes, interprets and organizes information, it performs calculations, it tells you where your ships have been and where they are right now.  

Can a person accomplish these tasks without software? Of course. A person armed with a pencil and paper, a financial calculator and a telephone can compute TCE, figure out ROB and estimate where a VLCC is on the water. Indeed, most things software does, humans can do, too, but software does them faster.

Even the most capable chartering team in maritime can use software, such as Orbit, to move faster especially when it comes to understanding which competitors are viable rivals for cargoes. Understanding the possible rivals requires that the team:

  • Log in to multiple systems
  • Pull data from each
  • Copy it into a spreadsheet
  • Perform ad hoc analysis that cannot be shared easily across departments
  • Wait for third-party market data that may take days to deliver

By the time they get this information it may be too late. Someone else has won the fixture.

Now, the chartering team can log in to one product to get the information they need in minutes. That product is Orbit’s OMI: Maritime Intelligence and Analytics solution.

Here’s how OMI works:

End users select a list of vessels or fleets they wish to monitor which are then visualized on desktop, tablet or mobile. Leveraging multiple data feeds including AIS data, vessel characteristics and historical voyages, Orbit’s AI and machine learning reveal competitors’ positions, activities at port and likely next destination, all with a series of clicks, behind one login. One client reported that “in a matter of a minute, we can see trading patterns of an individual vessel and drill down into vessel details to determine if it can even take on the actual cargo in play.”  

Let’s put some detail to this scenario. This is a real case study from a chemical carrier (the names of the vessels and dates have been altered at the client’s request).

“Our chartering team received a request from customer to pick up a specialty chemical in Huelva. It was for a prompt special cargo from Tarragona to Antwerp that required stainless steel cargo tankers as well as special equipment to carry this product. In this case, thermal oil in heating coils on the cargo tanks. We know from experience that there are very few ships that have thermal oil in their heating coils and which have stainless steel cargo tanks.

One of our vessels, the Seaward Pacific was positioned for the cargo, so we opened Orbit to analyze the competitors. It took 2 mins using OMI to see what we were up against.

We filtered out vessels that were too far away to make the laycan date and which lacked the proper equipment, revealed in the vessel characteristics data integrated into Orbit. With significantly filtered results, and additional information about our vessels from our VMS—also integrated into Orbit--we narrowed down the potential rivals to only one competitive vessel.

It was the Sky Northfield. It was in the area and had the stainless steel tanks to let it carry that specific chemical. Furthermore, we saw that she could reach the laycan date.

Thus, we knew we had only one competitor.

We contacted our broker to ask if THIS specific vessel was open for this cargo; it turned out it was not. Knowing that we were the only bidder, we increased our price by $500,000.”

To learn more about how Orbit can streamline your workflows, click the button below to book a demo.
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