Container shipping is suffering severe inefficiencies thanks to its poor operational visibility and failure to make use of all the available data in everyday shipments, the group chairman and CEO of global terminal operator DP World has argued.
In a recent post on LinkedIn headlined Data is the New Container, Sultan Ahmed Bin Sulayem urged both state and private sectors to come together to improve container shipping’s use of big data.
“[C]ontainers have transformed shipping for the better, but somewhere down the line we have lost sight of the goods housed within them,” the ports boss wrote, adding: “This lack of visibility has led to serious inefficiencies in today’s supply chain, with anxious retailers forced to order more than they need, earlier than they need, just in case.”
The article argued that the changes brought about technology sweeping through today’s shipping industry were as seismic as the moment in 1956 when Malcom McLean made containerisation mainstream.
“[I]f Malcom McLean could create order out of chaos with a steel container, then with governments and the private sector working hand-in-hand, we can do the same,” the DP World head urged.
Bin Sulayem said his company was currently “exploring the technologies and partnerships of the future”.
“With the world still waking up to the power of the data at our fingertips, we’re only just getting started,” the DP World executive concluded.