Belgium’s Antwerp Port Authority and the Federal Participation & Investment Company (FPIM) are set to jointly purchase a stake in NxtPort for €5.25m.
The transaction includes the capital and a subordinated loan of NxtPort.
Antwerp Port Authority will hold 75% of the newly purchased stake in NxtPort following the deal’s completion, with FPIM owning the remaining 25%.
NxtPort is a digital data platform that has been specially developed for the port community.
Antwerp Port Authority CEO Jacques Vandermeiren said: “With our participation, we seek to contribute towards the further development of NxtPort as an innovative data platform that will be a driver of logistical, maritime and industrial innovation in our port, as well as offering gains in efficiency.
“Big data is the fuel of the future economy. It is an engine of growth and change, so we have to back it in a big way.”
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Antwerp Port Authority further noted that data plays an important role in the development of smart logistics processes.
The ability to access the relevant data at the right time can help ports to transfer goods quickly from barge to quay, from quay to truck, or from ship to another seagoing vessel.
NxtPort CEO Daniel Lievens said: “With NxtPort, we aim to make this data transparent for all players in the supply chain.
“In this way we along with the other port players can develop the port of the future, where digitisation opens the way to smart, cost-efficient logistics.
“Last month we already introduced the first services with NxtPort, but we’re already looking beyond that.
“We’re currently working on various practical applications for improving the Customs processes.”
NxtPort is also currently exploring options to work with the forwarders, ship’s agents and shipping companies to make more effective use the available capacity at port terminals by offering involved parties an improved view of shipping routes.