Beyond Tracking – How AIS is Disrupting the Bulk Trade Market
by Mark Deverill -
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Beyond Tracking – How AIS is Disrupting the Bulk Trade Market

AIS data is key to driving disruptive innovation in the bulk market, beyond tracking vessels AIS data helps to map global trade

Mark Deverill

At Spire Maritime we build partnerships and foster relationships with companies of all sizes to develop innovative solutions for industry challenges. The dry bulk market is a global resource we all rely on to keep the economy moving and maintain vital supply chains including access to essentials like food and building materials. The maritime industry is seeing great changes through the use of AIS data beyond just tracking and other technology products and services and more and more, we’re seeing companies benefit from combining services, like weather forecasts or ship data and AIS data, and achieving great results.

The maritime industry is still heavily challenged by manual processes that have a high margin for error, that are time consuming and often analog, needing better fuel consumption modeling tools, and cost savings, among many others. The notion of using more than one type of data and utilizing data APIs to streamline and refine your enterprise is becoming increasingly popular throughout the maritime industry.

Digitizing the industry to solve for outdated processes

Bulk trade operations and chartering depend on out-dated manual processes with high risk of human error involving an inefficient combination of parsing through emails and tracking ships. From scheduling a charter to managing fleets, the current analog processes used in the maritime industry are incredibly time consuming, and the same is true for monitoring trade markets. However, with data becoming more and more available and easily accessible through APIs, these industries are ripe for digital transformation and a number of data savvy maritime professionals are already building innovative applications and solutions.

Shipfix uses Spire’s AIS-tracking API to display market insights through their dashboard on a global map.

Shipfix is leveraging AI to automate and digitize this process offering market insights to Maritime professionals who were previously dependent on manual and time-consuming processes including sorting through thousands of unstructured emails to locate key data. Spire Maritime’s AIS data API allows Shipfix users to visualize vessels globally and analyze global trade flows for commodities and products. Shipfix’s technology extracts key data from emails and AIS fields allowing users to filter market insights based on preferences including tonnage, open dates, open/load areas, cargo specifications, and vessel types.

But beyond knowing where commodities are currently, fusing AIS data with trade insights also provides a wealth of historical information to learn from. These comprehensive data archives allow global commodity shipping route information to be studied and analyzed to identify seasonal or regional trade patterns and economic cycles, year over year. At Spire, we launched a series of plug and play, one-time purchase products aimed at certain industries. Our Cargo Premium Sample lets you get started quickly using historical data for your specific industry. We currently offer premium samples for dry bulk, container, and cargo vessels as well as fishing vessels and an array of tanker vessels.

Pushing AIS data beyond it’s primary tracking function to give maritime professionals access to machine learning solutions that reduce risk, save time, and decrease costs. As market conditions tighten in a challenging economy, running efficient, lean operations are vital to keeping companies profitable. Data-driven decisions and predictive analytics are helping companies draw conclusions with confidence.

APIs: The key to faster innovation

Shipfix is a comprehensive platform for dry bulk chartering operations that collects metadata about ships, voyages, commodity flows, ports, and bunkers in one place.
AIS data is inherently flawed and cluttered, raw feeds demand a high level of refinement and processing to integrate usable data into an application.

Startups like Shipfix are now able to innovate faster and disrupt niche maritime sectors in a big way thanks to modern API’s. Where working with AIS data in applications was costly and time consuming, API’s like ours, are designed to plug into applications with minimal development.

With the platform now delivering AIS data and raw dry bulk market insights in an innovative way, maritime companies benefit by saving time and are able to rely on the accuracy of this new feature.

Bring us your challenges

Focusing on solving key maritime challenges with data remains the focus of Spire Maritime’s operations. Contact Spire Maritime today for more information on partnerships, services, and product support or download a free sample from one of our data stories.

 

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