Orange Business Services (OBS) has partnered with the European Union-sponsored initiative to develop a cloud-based enterprise resource planning (ERP) ship management platform.
The Exzellenzinitiative Schiffsmanagement (EIS) initiative will also include new business intelligence and IT standards that are aimed to improve management tools used by the shipping industry.
Additionally, it will provide shipping companies with real-time updated information on all ship management lifecycle processes and ship-to-shore, vessel-based and land-based communication infrastructure, thus facilitating real-time business decisions, enabling cost savings and improving safety and crew welfare.
Under the project, OBS will also deploy the cloud-based satellite solution on several vessels run by Columbia Ship Management, allowing it to meet its needs without depending on the internet.
Columbia Ship Management project manager Timothy Scheller said communication at sea constitutes specific challenges and was historically a source of problems in terms of cost, performance and support.
"With the help of OBS, we want to utilise this project to test and design solutions that help the industry take a giant leap forward and set new standards in maritime IT. With this initiative, we want to build a remotely managed, integrated communication and application infrastructure onboard that intelligently connects the vessel to the office at the lowest possible cost," Scheller said.
The EIS initiative also aims to support the European regional development fund (ERDF) and the City of Hamburg, Germany.
OBS satellite international business development head Michel Verbist said that with the new cloud-based platform in this project, the company can demonstrate how improved communication between vessels and management will streamline business tools and decisions.
In addition to OBS, the EU initiative will be joined by DNV/GL Group, evidanza AG, Humance Maritime Services, MarDynamics and Portal Systems.