Four of the world’s six largest carriers, including Maersk and MSC Mediterranean Shipping Company, have officially established the Digital Container Shipping Association (DCSA) after receiving regulatory approval.
The aim of the association, which also includes Hapag-Lloyd and Ocean Network Express (ONE), is to create common information technology standards that will improve the overall efficiency of the shipping sector.
The plan to create the DCSA was first announced in November 2018, a story PTI reported on, and each of the stakeholders is focused on driving standardization, digitalization and interoperability within container shipping.
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Following the signing of an official agreement in Amsterdam, the Netherlands, where the headquarters of the new organization is based, a leadership team consisting of industry veterans and new CEO Thomas Bagge was also announced.
Bagge, a director of digital transformation programmes at Maersk, brings extensive experience of using information technology to optimize shipping operations.
One of the first projects that will be launched as part of the association will aim to overcome “the lack of a common foundation for technical interfaces and data” in the maritime industry by creating standards.
André Simha, Chief Information Officer of MSC Mediterranean Shipping Company and Chairman of the Supervisory Board of DCSA, commented: “For the first time in twenty years, the container shipping industry has come together with a common goal to move the industry into the digital era.
“With the regulatory approval in place, we look forward for the association to take up work and to begin to collaborate with multiple stakeholders from the entire value chain.”
— Digital Container Shipping Association (DCSA.org) (@DCSA_org) April 15, 2019
DCSA has chosen to base themselves in Amsterdam as it provides proximity to shipping infrastructure and ease of access, as well as a good location for promising employees.
Simha added: “DCSA is working for the benefit of the entire container shipping industry, so it was important for us that the headquarters is located on neutral grounds, with no specific stakeholders or companies being favoured.”
DCSA is also looking to expand and, according to a statement, preparations for the addition of two more shipping companies are already taking place.