Technology does not progress at a linear scale as we humans like to think - it happens exponentially, and the shipping industry is moving along with it. As the industry begins to embrace the opportunities that technology presents, we’re seeing a surge in innovative tech startups vying to modernize the shipping space.
While there’s no way to include all of the future disrupters out there, here are ten companies paving the way for a new reality in global shipping.
Born from an observation of inefficiency in Brazil’s trucking sector, Miami-based Cargo42 is bringing the sharing economy to a traditionally slow-to-adopt industry. Through its app, Cargo42 offers companies lower rates to use local trucks that have empty space. At the same time, trucking companies enjoy an additional revenue stream and maximize productivity.
With over 85 shipping companies and 380 carriers already using the Cargo42 platform, we’re certain to see more from them in the future!
As far as tech trends go, blockchain is right up there with AR/VR - and Blockfreight is using it to disrupt global shipping. The first of its kind, Blockfreight has built an end-to-end blockchain solution for “bill of lading” access by all entities in the supply chain - from freight forwarders and shipping carriers to port operators and regulators.
While several companies, including Flexport, Haven, and FreightOS, are servicing the container market, Shipamax has set its sights on the multi-billion dollar non-containerized industry. The London-based startup provides a workflow management tool tailored to ship brokers and operators, which they claim streamline their processes when booking a bulk ship.
With a freemium version already released and more than 20 companies on the waitlist, Shipamax will continue to make headlines as one of the few tech companies in bulk shipping.
4. OpenSea Pro
There’s no doubt ship chartering is complicated and time-consuming. Thankfully, we now have web-based solutions like that of OpenSea Pro to bring ship chartering into the 21st century. Founded in 2014, OpenSea hosts an online marketplace for ship owners, charterers, and brokers.
This Oslo-based startup is leading the way in promoting transparent ocean freight pricing through its crowdsourced price comparison service which offers both benchmarking and market intelligence. As the world’s largest database for ocean freight rates, Xeneta provides real-time rates for over 160k global trade routes.
Xeneta’s recently raised 12M in Series B funding which will be used to drive their continued global expansion!
Kontainers joins an impressive class of digital freight platforms including Flexport and iContainers. Considering it often takes more than two days and 50 emails to arrange a container shipment, companies are aching for more efficient booking systems. With its online door to door booking and real-time tracking platform, the “Expedia of shipping” presents a worthy alternative.
Based on the mega success of Salesforce, Lanetix brings cloud-based CRM and workflow management to transportation and logistics. The industry-specific system does everything from forecasting TEUs to accelerating tender processes. The list of services is endless and continuing to grow.
Freight forwarding and customs clearing shouldn’t be this hard, according to India-based startup, Shipmnts. The company is working to future-proof global trade by simplifying end-to-end logistics with a next-gen shipping network. Backed by 3 multinational CEOs, Shipmnts seems well poised to take a shot at transforming the second largest industry in the world.
As global trade becomes increasingly complex, ClearMetal provides some much-needed guidance by bringing predictive intelligence to container shipping. The company uses data science and machine learning to offer a range of solutions that predict equipment, trade, vessel and shipper needs.
It’s “Silicon Valley meets trade expertise” - and they’re not going anywhere! In a recent Bloomberg interview, ClearMetal CEO Adam Compain said the company is in it for the long haul!
10. Octopi TOS (New Updates)
Though we were included in the last roundup, we have new, innovative updates to our modern TOS. We deploy new updates weekly and have made significant improvements to our TOS since the last roundup. For example, we recently added a “Punch Card Report” to chart gate movement and allow terminal operators to see what days and times they’re busiest. The numbers along the X axis represent time and the size and intensity of the circle represents the amount of gate activity at that time. If you want to check it out first hand, reach out for a demo.
There’s no doubt we’ll continue to see companies like these making waves as we usher in a new era for an age-old industry. It has now become a question of when, not if, industry players will make their bet on the digital future.
About Author: Guille Carlos
Guille is the founder of Octopi: a modern, web-based Terminal Operating System (TOS). He is constantly trying to simplify processes and uses data to truly understand customer needs.