As the container shipping and ocean cruising industries face unprecedented challenges due to COVID-19, the pandemic has heightened the need for technology providing visibility, real-time information, digitization and remote connectivity at sea.
The current global pandemic is dramatically impacting the maritime market including maritime shipping and ocean cruising. The cruise industry is currently on pause with 100% of the ocean fleet out of service with plans to slowly resume operations in the coming months, while 9% of container shipping fleets are inactive. Across these two industries thousands of maritime professionals are on furlough. Due to the slowdown, many carriers and industry suppliers are facing real liquidity issues. The conditions are tough for sure. From an outsider perspective it may be difficult to recognize what happens at sea matters in our daily lives. Both shipping and cruising are vital to sustain us and to finding respite respectively. As the pandemic progresses and eventually passes, there is growing evidence and discussion that wireless technology solutions will enable the maritime market to become more efficient, profitable and safer operators at sea.
Transportation at Sea is a Global Concern
Simply stated, a significant portion of what any given country produces, including industrial and household goods, raw materials, food and medicines, is dependent on the sea for transportation. Overall, total export products are estimated at $19.347 trillion USD as of 2018. Global trade exports worldwide on average represents 45% of worldwide Gross Domestic Product (GDP) with 90% of goods produced transported on a ship, barge or boat. The global maritime shipping industry is vital to sustain us daily.
Top Global Export Countries (2018 Export Sales $Millions USD)
Cruising is also important as a unique vacation experience enabling people to see the world by sea. Cruise lines carried 30 million passengers around the world last year equivalent to the total number of annual visitors to either Japan, Austria or Greece (30 million annual visitors each year). This global industry contributes $150 billion USD ($50 billion USD in wages and salaries) to the world economy annually on close to 300 ocean ships. Cruisers are also loyal, with 82% likely to book a cruise again as their next vacation.
Global Ocean Cruise Passengers (In Millions)
Combined, the container shipping and cruise industry supports over 5 million jobs worldwide. What happens at sea matters and how the maritime industry responds to the COVD-19 crisis now, in the coming months and years ahead will have global ramifications.
The Digital Recovery from COVID-19
For both the maritime shipping and cruise industries their continued success will depend on how they manage their fleet capacity going forward. Currently container shipping capacity is down 9% while the ocean cruise capacity is completely out of service for now.
Inactive Container and Cruise Fleet Capacity as of April 2020
From a cruise perspective, managing capacity is equally critical for success moving forward. Unlike maritime container shipping, 100% of the worldwide cruise fleet is not carrying passengers nor generating revenue. Cruise lines, vendors, port operators and destination location business that rely on cruising for their livelihood have faith in the resiliency of the industry and are working together through the crisis. For example, WMS is providing Wi-Fi services at no cost, out of goodwill, for affected passengers and crew members on cruise ships. Some crew members that are having a difficult time getting repatriated to their home country are calling these ships home for now and staying connected is equally important at sea as on land during this pandemic.
Our support of the maritime market is steadfast as we continue to maintain our network assets on land and sea. It’s clear that connectivity solutions like cellular, Wi-Fi and Internet of Things (IoT) will help companies in the maritime industry perform operations more safely and efficiently as cost-control will be important for both container and cruise lines. We also believe remote connectivity will enable workers on container ships and passengers on cruise ships to perform tasks digitally to minimize physical contact and maintain social distancing. As a leader in maritime communications for over 15 years, we are here to help.
Wireless Maritime Services and Globe Tracker Join Forces to Provide Advanced End-to-End IoT Based Visibility to Seaboard Marine
Wireless Maritime Services (WMS), the largest wireless network operator at sea and Globe Tracker, the fastest growing provider of global supply chain IoT visibility for cold-chain, have partnered to bring real-time reefer monitoring to Seaboard Marine, the largest marine cargo shipping line in Central, South America and the Caribbean, via a multi-year, multi-ship agreement.
With this new partnership, Seaboard Marine becomes the world’s first container ocean line to implement a truly portable, fully 24/7 monitored, 4G LTE based private cellular and integrated satellite communication network for containers on vessels. The innovation and expertise from WMS and Globe Tracker results in a novel vessel network that is seamless, interoperable, and provides end-to-end enhanced visibility and real-time connectivity, both in the cloud and on the vessel at sea. Seaboard Marine also becomes the world’s first ocean line to implement full IoT visibility across their fleet of intermodal assets, including reefers, gensets, chassis, and vessels – all on a single integrated easy to use platform.
“By IoT equipping our Controlled Atmosphere (CA) reefer fleet and other critical assets, we are well-positioned to provide more responsive cold chain services for our trade lanes, which facilitates complex processes such as USDA cold treatment,” noted Seaboard Marine Vice President Piero Buitano.
“The vessel system also provides real-time alerts to crew technicians, so problems can be quickly detected and corrected, if necessary, thereby increasing temperature compliance and reducing the possibility of load-loss,” added Frederick Urbina, Reefer M&R Manager at Seaboard Marine.
“Bringing WMS and Globe Tracker together creates a world-class integrated solution for Seaboard Marine. As the largest mobile network provider at sea, we are extremely happy to be working with Seaboard Marine on this project. They have been a valuable partner in pushing us to innovate first-to-market solutions that we are now deploying within their fleet. We look forward to continuing to partner with Seaboard Marine for future innovations,” claimed Pramod Arora, WMS President & CEO.
“We are more than delighted to team with WMS for Seaboard Marine. WMS offers the most advanced and most reliable maritime wireless solution in the market allowing our team to deploy the first portable 4G LTE vessel network, allowing deeper signal penetration in the cargo hold over competing solutions, and resulting in superior network communications reliability” stated Don Miller, Globe Tracker’s Vice President of Marketing and Sales.
This project puts Seaboard Marine into the exclusive group of premier ocean lines, which are implementing IoT technology as part of the digital transformation of the maritime shipping container industry.
About Seaboard Marine
Established in 1983, Seaboard Marine, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Seaboard Corporation, is a premier ocean transportation company providing direct, regular service between North America, the Caribbean Basin, Central, and South America. With a fleet of over twenty-five vessels serving nearly forty ports, Seaboard Marine is a trade leader in the Western Hemisphere.
For more information: www.seaboardmarine.com
About Globe Tracker ApS
Globe Tracker is a privately held Danish company revolutionizing global supply chain visibility. Globe Tracker specializes in supply chain tracking, monitoring and cutting-edge sensor technology providing true end-to-end supply chain visibility. Globe Tracker has offices in Denmark, USA, Iceland, Faroe Islands, and Canada.
For more information: www.globetracker.com
Wireless Maritime Services (WMS), is the largest mobile network operator at sea supporting more than 18 million passengers per year on over 160 vessels providing cellular mobile, Wi-Fi and Internet of Things (IoT) services to the maritime industry. WMS has been the pioneer in maritime cellular networks since 2004 and will continue to lead in maritime communications by leveraging our RF technology expertise, maritime experience and investment in innovation. WMS is headquartered in Miramar, FL USA.
Additional information about WMS products and services is available at www.wmsatsea.com
© 2019 WMS Intellectual Property. All rights reserved. All other marks contained herein are the property of their respective owners.
Wireless Maritime Services (WMS) Becomes Exclusive Onboard Cellular Provider for Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings Ltd.
MIRAMAR, FL, March 7, 2018- Wireless Maritime Services, the global leader in maritime cellular service, and Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings Ltd., a leading global cruise company which operates Norwegian Cruise Line, Oceania Cruises and Regent Seven Seas Cruises, have signed a long-term agreement extending and expanding onboard cellular services to the company's entire fleet of 27 ships and future new builds.
"We're excited to continue our relationship with WMS by including the entire Norwegian Cruise fleet in this Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings Ltd. global agreement" said Ross Henderson, senior vice president of onboard revenue for Norwegian Cruise Line. "WMS has proven to be a world-class provider of cellular services onboard our cruise ships and is the right choice for supplying cellular voice and data to our guests."
With the increasing demand for guests and crew to stay connected while cruising, WMS' leading cellular technology and unparalleled design provides better cellular coverage, reliable connectivity and faster data speeds.
"We appreciate and are humbled by the confidence Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings Ltd. has shown in WMS's capabilities" said Pramod Arora, president & chief executive officer of WMS, "The responsibility to provide mobile connectivity to all three Norwegian brands is something we do not take lightly, and WMS is committed to make sure that our service and products continue to be best-in-class in the cruise industry."
© 2018 WMS Intellectual Property. All rights reserved. All other marks contained herein are the property of their respective owners.