Four major lines – AP Moller-Maersk, Hapag-Lloyd, MSC and ONE – have jointly established Digital Container Shipping Association (DCSA) to drive standardisation, digitalisation and interoperability in the industry.
The neutral and non-profit DCSA officially started operations on 12 April in its headquarters in Amsterdam, the Netherlands, after it gained regulatory approval from the Federal Maritime Commission (FMC) last month.
“For the first time in 20 years, the container shipping industry has come together with a common goal to move the industry into the digital era. With 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,” said Andre Simha, chief information officer of MSC (Mediterranean Shipping Company) and chairman of the supervisory board of DCSA.
To create value quickly and to overcome some of the biggest pain points in the industry, one of DCSA’s first projects is focusing on standards to overcome the lack of a common foundation for technical interfaces and data.
Additionally, to develop another cornerstone for the foundation of the future of shipping, the association is creating an industry blueprint for processes. The work undertaken will be for the benefit of the entire industry, as all standards will be openly published and free of charge.
Thomas Bagge from Maersk has been appointed ceo and statutory director of DCSA. Bagge has been involved in various transformation activities in Maersk covering people, process and technology, over the past 12 years.
In addition to Bagge and Simha, two other members of the DCSA supervisory board are Martin Gnass, managing director information technology from Hapag-Lloyd, and Noriaki Yamaga, managing director of corporate and innovation from ONE (Ocean Network Express).
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At present, DCSA is in discussions with multiple other container shipping lines globally who are interested in joining the association, and preparations for membership of two companies are already ongoing.