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Interview: Nereus Digital Bunkers to launch self-developed bunker procurement ecosystem for shipping sector

Nereus Platform will help purchasers and vendors of bunker fuel transact through all stages of bunkering processes while helping them reduce operating costs and save time, amongst others.

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Nikolas Gkikas

The following is an exclusive interview by Singapore bunkering publication Manifold Times with Nikolas Gkikas, founder of maritime software and brokerage company Nereus Digital Bunkers, on its Nereus Platform which connects purchasers, traders and physical suppliers of bunker fuel:  

MT: What is the current main product of the Nereus Digital Bunkers?

Nereus Digital Bunkers has developed the SaaS Platform ‘Nereus’ which helps purchasers and vendors transact through all stages of the bunkering process. It serves as an ecosystem of tools specifically designed to help purchasers and vendors to save time, reduce operating costs, minimise risk and decrease complexity. The platform provides solutions using sophisticated analytics, oil pricing forecastings that cover and exceed the needs of the industry, from marine fuel suppliers to purchasers. NEREUS platform has an active roadmap with a vision to become the ultimate ecosystem of bunkering in the digital era.

MT: What is the name for this new software and how does it enhance the Nereus Digital Bunkers platform?

The software’s name is ‘Nereus Platform’. It is a software through which vendors (traders, physical suppliers) can upload their indication prices and information about their companies. This way, purchasers can keep in touch with them through Nereus Platform. Currently, the software is in beta version and we are working on it with some strategic clients.

nereus digital bunkers 1

MT: Why will physical suppliers and traders find this software useful?

Nereus Platform provides a set of advantages that make it unique and are destined to make the life and work of supplier and traders easier and more effective. Some of these advantages are:

  • For physical suppliers and traders
  • Risk Minimisation/ Hedging Optimisation - Using the models outputs, vendors can now hedge more efficiently 
  • Time Optimisation - Providing the opportunity to buy or hedge more time efficiently reducing costs.
  • Find Clients
  • Be part of Nereus ecosystem
  • API service

All in all, Nereus aims to be the aggregator of all information related to the bunkering operations, where inquiry information is stored, organised and shared across departments. It serves as a single source of truth for the inquiries of the past and a pilot for the future inquiries. At Nereus we are fully aware that knowledge and information -at the right moment- make all the difference in our industry.

MT: How is this software different from the ones currently offered by various players in the bunkering sector?

Nereus platform differentiates itself from the rest industry like-minded software by integrating many different tools in one platform, facilitating end to end trading, inquiry processing and organised information storing of almost all bunkering operation aspects. The strongest and most competitive advantages of Nereus Platform is that it:

  • Simplifies bunkering operation workflows, by including many roles that come into play when an inquiry is processed within a company 
  • Helps vendors gain market clarity and stay up to date with market trends, through state of the art analytics and the predictive power of AI technology.

With the Nereus Platform, workload management is reduced by 68% (actual data from user analytics and customer surveys). Our oil forecasting accuracy is 73% (empirical observation from real world platform performance).

nereus digital bunkers 2

MT: What kind of helpful information can users expect from the analytics market insights available in your software and how is this information different from the info available from information providers?

Nereus Analytics is employing various statistical models including multivariate linear models to identify primary risk factors and proxy the fair prices of assets against these risk factors. We also provide historical data across the board for ad hoc decisions, customised signals to clients by exploring “big data” and adding value to the daily workload.

The models can be based on fundamental and technical analysis, sentiment and valuations to generate signals for various assets.  For example, the sentiment signal for buying Oil contracts has a high "Hit" to "Miss" working as a contrarian over a certain time horizon. Our forecasting capabilities have provided a new approach to the bunkering world. Nereus Analytics has developed oil forecasting models based on: Commodity Analytics, Market Valuations, Market Sentiment and more. Using various statistical tools to analyse the market data on oil, Nereus Analytics has managed to provide to their clients the tools to make the right decisions at the right time using the best solution.

MT: What were the challenges and considerations faced through development of this software and how did your team overcome them?

Custom software development is often surrounded by issues of what the client wants and expects and what the development team understands and delivers.      

Budgets ran over, releases were slow and delivery was disjointed, with each party’s expectations never being met. Initially the new engagement also had expectation mismatches but then we created a dedicated team. The teams started working as one team with interactive workshops that resulted in clear user stories which went to development only after sign off. This process was refined over time with constant meetups and even joint testing sessions as a team resulting in a successful integrated team with quality delivery being our main focus.

MT: What visions do you expect from this new piece of software? What do you hope to achieve through its launch?

Through my 18-year career in the shipping industry, where I was working firstly as an agent in the Port of Los Angeles, then as a bunker broker in Connecticut Greenwich and then as a bunker trader in Greece, I had the opportunity to engage with the bunker industry from many different viewpoints. Through my experience, I managed to see the gap in the industry, which of course was the absence of the tools that technology provides. For this reason, market research and communication with clients was a time-consuming process. As a result, by using all the experience and the information I gathered all these years, I decided to create a start-up in the shipping industry and take advantage of the big trend of technological transition that defines our time. Nereus Digital Bunkers’ vision is to create an ecosystem for bunkering, where purchasers and vendors will come in touch with each other and communicate.

nereus digital bunkers 3

MT: Why will physical suppliers and traders find this software useful?

Nereus Platform provides a set of advantages that make it unique and are destined to make the life and work of supplier and traders easier and more effective. Some of these advantages are:

For physical suppliers and traders:

  • Risk Minimisation/ Hedging Optimisation - Using the models outputs, vendors can now hedge more efficiently 
  • Time Optimisation - Providing the opportunity to buy or hedge more time efficiently reducing costs.
  • Find Clients
  • Be part of Nereus ecosystem
  • API service

All in all, Nereus aims to be the aggregator of all information related to the bunkering operations, where inquiry information is stored, organised and shared across departments. It serves as a single source of truth for the inquiries of the past and a pilot for the future inquiries. At Nereus we are fully aware that knowledge and information -at the right moment- make all the difference in our industry.

 

Photo credit: Nereus Digital Bunkers
Published: 21 October, 2022

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Decarbonisation

SMW 2024: Maritime industry on track to adopt mid-term decarbonisation measures, says IMO chief

Safety, inclusion and transparency will be key areas for Mr Arsenio Dominguez’s tenure as Secretary-General of the International Maritime Organization.

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SMW 2024: Maritime industry on track to adopt mid-term decarbonisation measures, says IMO chief

The article ‘Maritime industry on track to adopt mid-term decarbonisation measures: IMO chief’ was first published on Issue 1 of the Singapore Maritime Week 2024 Show Dallies; it has been reproduced in its entirety on Singapore bunkering publication Manifold Times with permission from The Nutgraf and the Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore:

Toh Wen Li
[email protected]

The maritime industry is “on track” to roll out decarbonisation measures by 2025 as set out by the International Maritime Organization, said its new chief Arsenio Dominguez.

“We are on track to adopt mid-term measures by late 2025 to cut greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, to reach net zero targets,” said Mr Dominguez, who took over as IMO Secretary-General in January.

In 2023, the IMO released a revised GHG strategy to reach net-zero emissions from shipping by or around 2050 – far more ambitious than its 2018 initial GHG strategy, which aimed only to cut emissions by at least 50 per cent compared to 2008.

“These will help us progress towards achieving netzero GHG emissions by or around 2050, with indicative checkpoints to reach by 2030 (cut GHG emissions by at least 20 per cent, striving for 30 per cent), and 2040 (cut GHG emissions by at least 70 per cent, striving for 80 per cent).”

Mr Dominguez, who will be speaking on the opening day of the 18th edition of SMW, also emphasised the need to keep seafarers safe against the backdrop of heightened geopolitical tensions. He said the attacks on ships in the Red Sea have far-reaching economic implications.

“Prolonged disruptions in container shipping could lead to delayed deliveries, high costs, and inflation. Energy security and food security could potentially be affected due to increased prices,” he said.

“These attacks pose serious threats to global maritime security, as well as the security and maritime trade for the coastal states in the region,” he said, calling out the Red Sea attacks as “categorically unacceptable”. But he remains confident that the industry will continue to stay resilient. “I trust that shipping organisations and Member States alike will come together in the relevant IMO fora to seek collaboration and look for solutions together.”

Mr Dominguez also pledged to create a more inclusive IMO, one that is more gender-balanced in an industry that has long been dominated by men.

“I have appointed a gender balanced senior management team and initiated a policy of refraining from participating in panels or events unless gender representation is respected. I encourage the maritime community to follow this example,” he said.

He added that the IMO will also strive to fulfil its mandate as the world’s regulator for international shipping; support IMO’s 176 Member States, particularly Small Island Developing States and Least Developed Countries; raise public awareness of IMO’s impact; and adopt a “people-centred approach”.

“My vision is for IMO to flourish as a transparent, inclusive, and diverse institution,” he said. 

Singapore can ‘shine a light on the way forward’

Key maritime hubs like Singapore can play a key role as the industry pushes ahead in its quest to decarbonise, said International Maritime Organization’s (IMO) Secretary-General, Mr Arsenio Dominguez.

“Singapore is (in) a great position to participate in trials and pilots to show what works, including routebased actions – and share results of any trials back to IMO,” he said.

The green transition poses a slew of fresh considerations for the maritime sector. A major bunkering hub such as Singapore will need to look at making changes to infrastructure to deliver new fuels.

Other considerations for the industry include safety, pricing, lifecycle emissions, supply chain constraints, barriers to adoption and more, added Mr Dominguez. Seafarers, too, will need to be trained in how to operate new technology safely.

“We need ‘early movers’ in the industry as well as forward-looking policy makers to take the necessary risks and secure the right investments that will stimulate long-term solutions for the sector,” he said.

Singapore Maritime Week is a chance for key stakeholders to “have the conversations and discussions that can formulate ideas and bring new solutions”, Mr Dominguez said.

Now, more than ever, collaboration will be crucial. “The experience of critical maritime hubs like Singapore can help shine a light on the way forward for many issues. Here the IMO can play a role in providing opportunities for Singapore and other maritime hubs to share their expertise with all Member States. Shipping is global – no single country can go it alone.” 

Singapore Maritime Week 2024 was organised by Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore from 15 to 19 April. 

 

Photo credit: International Maritime Organization
Article credit: The Nutgraf/ Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore
Published: 23 April, 2024

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Winding up

Singapore: Liquidator issues notice of dividend for Paliy Marine Engineering

Liquidator of Paliy Marine Engineering, which is undergoing voluntary liquidation, issued a notice on the first and final dividend.

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calculator steve pb from Pixabay

A notice of dividend for Paliy Marine Engineering Pte Ltd, which is undergoing voluntary liquidation, was published on the Government Gazette on Friday (19 April).

The following is the details of the notice:

Name of Company : Paliy Marine Engineering Pte. Ltd. (In Creditors’ Voluntary Liquidation) 

Unique Entity No. / Registration No. : 199608223D 

Address of Former Registered Office : 149 Rochor Road #03-28 Singapore 188426 

Amount per centum : 100 per centum of all admitted preferential claims 12.21 per centum of all admitted ordinary claims 

First and Final or otherwise : First and Final 

Name of Liquidator : Abuthahir Abdul Gafoor 

Address of Liquidator : c/o AAG Corporate Advisory Pte. Ltd. 144 Robinson Road #14-02 Robinson Square Singapore 068908

According to SGP Business website, the firm’s principal activity is building and repairing of ships, tankers and other ocean-going vessels. 

Related: Singapore: Paliy Marine Engineering liquidator issues intended dividend notice

 

Photo credit: steve pb from Pixabay
Published: 23 April 2024

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MoU

IBIA and BIMCO to collaborate on bunker fuel and maritime challenges

Both will collaborate in areas including research initiatives, studies, and projects relevant to bunker or marine energy industry and maritime sector as well as training and education.

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IBIA and BIMCO to collaborate on bunker fuel and maritime challenges

The International Bunker Industry Association (IBIA) and BIMCO on Monday (22 April) said they have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to collaborate on some of the monumental challenges and opportunities within the areas of bunker, marine energy and maritime sectors and help facilitate shipping’s decarbonisation efforts.

The parties have agreed to leverage their respective expertise and resources to develop innovative solutions and initiatives to facilitate the transition towards cleaner fuels and efficient and sustainable shipping practices. The partnership MOU will focus on addressing the following key areas:

Research and Development: Collaborate on research initiatives, studies, and projects relevant to the bunker/marine energy industry and maritime sector.

Information Sharing: Share relevant information, publications, and data that may be beneficial to the members of both organisations.

Training and Education: Explore opportunities for joint training programs, seminars, and educational initiatives to enhance the knowledge and skills of professionals in the maritime and bunker/marine energy industry.

Influence: Work together on efforts to address common issues and challenges faced by the industry.

Alexander Prokopakis, Executive Director of IBIA, said: “This partnership between IBIA and BIMCO marks an important step towards addressing the pressing challenge of decarbonisation in the shipping industry. The collaboration underscores the industry’s collective commitment to navigating towards a greener future for maritime operations.”

David Loosley, BIMCO Secretary General & CEO, said: “As we work towards the checkpoints and targets of the updated GHG strategy of the IMO, working across all sectors that influence and support decarbonisation of shipping will be key. Our ships will be relying on many different fuel solutions in the process and working toward the safety and availability of those is crucial.” 

IBIA and BIMCO are committed to driving progress towards a more sustainable and environmentally responsible future for the global shipping industry.

 

Photo credit: IBIA and BIMCO
Published: 23 April 2024

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