Marine Online officially kicked off what it claims to be the “world’s first integrated maritime e-commerce platform”, which has more than 10,000 product listings and 4,000 service providers offering over 10 marine services including chartering, bunkering, port agency, ship supply, crewing, and ship sales and purchase.
The third-party e-commerce platform has been in development for more than three years with a multinational team of more than 100 people.
Stephen Qi, coo of Marine Online and ceo of Brightoil Petroleum Singapore, said: “Shipowners form the core of the shipping industry and is the source of business for all marine suppliers. However, recent global economic uncertainties place tremendous strain on shipowners to maintain their operations and this vicious cycle continues downstream to their suppliers.
“Marine Online spent three years developing eMarineOnline.com, with great ambitions to cut operational costs, improve efficiency and promote transparency within the maritime ecosystem, and eventually to bring sustainable profitability back to the industry. This one-stop integrated maritime platform, accessible via online and through its mobile app, enables sellers from all over the world to list their products and services,” Qi said.
Marine Online has designed two features that aim to cater to buyers’ preferences when trading on the platform.
An artificial intelligence-powered Request for Quotation (RFO) tool allows shipowners to either request for multiple quotations at a click or simply checkout from the e-store. All transactions and evaluation data will be reflected in the sellers’ overall credit system on the platform.
Marine Online has also partnered with fintech company M-DAQ in developing an online payment system. The M-DAQ support helps Marine Online’s customers save on foreign exchange costs and provides an escrow service.
Building on Big Data, AI, blockchain and other new technologies, Marine Online is looking to raise service and quality standards within the industry. It is also planning to expand into other regions, connecting all marine companies and expand port coverage to build an efficient, transparent business platform.
Bruno Bai, vice president of Marine Online, said: “In three to six months, we intend to unlock even more exciting features and functions for our customers. As eMarineOnline.com grows with more suppliers and shipowners joining the platform, we will eventually launch a credit evaluation system, 3PL logistic support, review and rating as well as financing services, creating the fundamentals of a comprehensive e-commerce ecosystem.”