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Container shipping not under threat from a digital disruptor - APL chief Sartini

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APL chief Nicolas Sartini does not believe that container shipping faces a major threat from a digital disruptor such as Uber.

Speaking at the Singapore International Bunkering Conference (Sibcon) Sartini commented on what was keeping shipping senior executives awake at night.

“Is there a digital disruption in the industry? Well not really, our industry is different from the worlds of Air BnB and Uber,” he said.

“The success of these two disruptors come from the fact they able to bring and use unused capacity to the market – in the case of Uber private cars and in the case of Air BnB flats. In our industry we indeed have excess capacity in the market but it would not be possible for a digital operator to just unleash new destabilising capacity,” Sartini explained.

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But while the APL ceo does not see the threat of a digital disruptor to container shipping this does not mean the sector can afford to stick its head in the sand and ignore digitalisation.

“That being said all shipping companies must embrace disgitalisation. For a shipping company this can be as simple as being able to offer online container pricing or booking. Digitalisation in the shipping industry is at its infancy stage,” he said.

Last week APL’s parent company CMA CGM inaugurated a start-up incubator Ze Box in Marseilles able to house 15 technology start-ups for 12 – 18 months.

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