Liji Nowal, Vinit Shetty, Anand Raman, Kapil Patel, and Binai Thoppil had 15 years of experience in shipping industry and companies like Akzo Nobel and IBM. They used to create software that managed maritime logistics in a shipping industry.
The team in 2009, started an IT company named Esfera & Aster (E&A), which focussed on logistics, work management, and RFID. In 2015 the team started ODeX to perform immediate payment settlement and quick documentation between small and medium sized business and ports.
The five on interaction with Shipping (Ocean) Logistics industry realised that shipping business could function in a more productive way with the help of software. Ocean Logistics used to connect many stakeholders manually and took almost three days to complete all the procedures and dispatch a container. ODeX on its arrival reduced the entire process to a single day. ODeX also has a payment platform to perform traction of money. The platform connects with all the ports and shipping lines and also integrates with most of the banks. Every time while making a payment, the company charges a fee. The company has invested about six crores in developing the platform and integrating with banks and shipping ecosystems.
Large sets of agents have dominated the shipping industry for a long time, and there have not been many start-ups in the industry. Technology plays a very less role, with Shipping Exchange being the only start-up. It is a bidding ecosystem that helps the SMBs to discover shipping prices without middlemen.
Captain Sagar Dange, Head of Western India Operations at CMA CGM Agencies India Private Limited likes the way the company increases the efficiency. The customers can efficiently track invoices and acquire real –time payment confirmation by reducing the manual process. The company helps in reducing the time and cost involved in export and import operations.
Captain Vinod Nair, VP Operations at “K” Line India Pvt. Ltd admires the new concept of collection management of documents which facilitates the customers as well as the Shipping Lines.
Advantages for Shipping Lines
- Monitor and control the payments in the better way.
- Provide Safe and secure transactions
- No more wait for receiving delivery orders and making payment.
- Identification of each payment against particular document is accessible without the intervention of the accounts department concerning RTGS/NEFT payments.
- System based delivery orders are generated to ensure document and cargo safety.
- Simultaneously view DO on systems and check its correctness .
- Form 13 can be collected without any queues.
- No claims for incorrect data in Form 13 from shippers.
Advantages for Importers
- The customer staff need not visit the Shipping line offices
- Payment to shipping lines can be made immediately with confirmation.
- Dispatching the transporters to the CFS is possible without sending a copy of DO to the transporter.
- Export customer need not depend on Surveyors to input accurate details.
- Manpower and cost are saved to a considerable extent.
- Printing/faxing/sending the DO to the transporters is eliminated.
The Bottom Line
The platform of ODeX can scale up to emerging markets. The company is new but eases many issues and has a lot of opportunities. The scope for price transparency is high, which is accessible by experts in the industry.