Columbus is being launched after a six-month trial period with undisclosed customers and aims to optimise workflows between parties and increased use of automation to improve efficiency and reduce transaction time.
“We have created a mutually beneficial platform where ship managers and suppliers can seamlessly connect and transact,” says Karim Khan, founder of Marinus Global. “The problem is that in many cases, it’s hard for these two parties to come into contact and do business together, as the process of requisition to purchase can take, on average, weeks before it’s finished. We wanted to expedite that timeline for everyone involved.”
Automation is key part of Marinus sees as differentiating Columbus and it is not simply a form to fill in and then clicking a send button.
Karim explains to Seatrade Maritime News: “From the moment a RFQ is sent, ship managers can compare RFQs, negotiate pricing, accept or decline in real-time. Purchase orders and invoices are generated automatically and sent for approval.
“Built-in CRM allows customers to enter data once and re-use throughout the platform, whether it’s creating a requisition, invoice or following up customer relations.”
Catalogues are synchronized between ship and shore and crew can order pre-approved parts and provisions sending orders to shore.
“Our SmartFlow technology automates tasks that used to take people weeks to complete, so now they can use their limited resources elsewhere,” says Khan. “With programmed machine learning capabilities, Columbus performs a real-time analysis of available suppliers, factoring in changing ETA, weather patterns, and port traffic.
In terms of pricing Columbus does not take a cut on each purchase order but rather user pays a fixed price $299 per user, per month with no limit on number of ships, companies or subsidiaries, RFQs or POs.
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