The Chief Information Officer of Mediterranean Shipping Company (MSC) has said that the global shipping industry will improve its approach to technological change through greater collaboration.
Andre Simha made the comments at the Global Liner – Shipping 2030 Asia conference in Singapore, suggesting that a common approach to standardization would help turn new innovations into actual strategic business initiatives.
Simha said: “It’s great that so many shippers and carriers are all here together in Singapore discussing this topic.
“We have always had a strong spirit of cooperation behind the scenes.
“Now we need to think a bit more about how we standardize where our interests are aligned, so we have the necessary critical mass to turn innovation into reality.”
MSC's CIO, Andre Simha, is helping his company to move with digitization trends
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MSC, the second largest container shipping company in the world, recently collaborated with the third biggest CMA CGM, to back TRAXENS — a French start-up specialising in smart container monitoring and coordination.
Conference speakers acknowledged that shipping has lagged some other industries on technological transformation and that the sector should discuss the digital trends that will benefit customers.
With the industry showing signs of recovery after a challenging 2016, the conference offered a sense of optimism about the opportunities posed by digital change.
Simha presented himself as being unfazed by the prospect of the container shipping sector becoming disrupted by start-ups trying to undermine the business models of the major carriers.
He told the audience that the impetus for a digital facelift will come from those who implement new initiatives, as opposed to a single new game-changing innovation.
Simha added: “MSC has been monitoring and adapting to technological trends for more than 40 years and invests selectively in technologies that spark true innovation and deliver a return on investment.
“We are pitched a lot of ideas and have developed a good sense of what is just another hype.”