Dynamic Trading at oceanconnect.com
OceanConnect.com (oceanconnect.com) is a global e-marketplace for selling and buying marine fuels. It is a consortium backed by the major global suppliers and some large buyers of such fuels. More than 700 registered users from about 50 countries deal in this market. Marine fuels vary in quality and type, and they represent 30 to 50 percent of total operating expenses of oceangoing vessels. Traditional trading is complex, inefficient, and expensive. Trading in marine fuels is done by auctions and negotiations. Thus, an electronic solution has the potential for substantial savings if the e-commerce platform can be cost-effective and scalable. Furthermore, it must allow for negotiations on attributes other than price, and it needs to have a robust architecture. OceanConnect.com found the proper solution with LiveExchange Enterprise (from Moai Technologies). The solution supports complex marine fuel requirements, specifically addressing the issue of different prices of different products at different ports and offering the ability to compare prices in real time and to negotiate. To do all this, OceanConnect.com uses a variety of transaction models ranging from the more traditional sealed-bid process to reverse auctions to complex, multistage online negotiations on multiple parameters. These mechanisms allow marine fuel purchasers to invite selected participants, specify the time and place of an online transaction event, and customize product specifications and requirements. Having the ability to bid on several parameters in addition to price (such as fuel quality and delivery time and location) allows buyers and sellers to reach agreements that improve total cost of transactions, saving money for buyers and sellers alike. OceanConnect.com supplements the auctions with features that better serve the market. For example, noticing that bidding activity peaked near the end of auction events,...
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