The Hamburg-based DemoGate start-up is stirring up the shipping sector by creating auctions for end-of-life vessels – 80 per cent of which consist of valuable steel and other recyclable materials. Until now, selling the components has proven neither efficient nor transparent.
Clarity versus chaos on market
DemoGate offers clients a smart digital price-matching tool to reduce transaction costs. Clients create an auction and buyers are informed about the terms and conditions and receive information about all the recycling costs and regulations in different countries. The tool also helps shipping companies to compare net prices and decide where to scrap a vessel. All kinds of shipping companies are among the users. The start-up is now focusing on the international demolition market with a view to environmental protection and digitalisation.
Henning Martin, founder of DemoGate, said: “We have developed a digital, innovative tool to make the sales process more transparent for our customers. Our aim is promote environmental-protection in ship recycling in future. We are also promoting the use of digital solutions. There is still a lack of awareness about the potential of efficiency thanks to digitalisation in this sector.”
Promoting green recycling
Ship recycling involves completely or partially dismantling a vessel to recover components and materials for reprocessing and re-use and taking care of hazardous materials, and storage and treatment of components and materials on site, but not their further processing or disposal in separate facilities. DemoGate’s lower transaction costs promote green recycling. “The share of environment-friendly scrapped ships is still very low. And in Germany, we are hoping for a greater emphasis on green recycling,” said Martin, whose grandfather used to manage a seaman’s mission. Martin grew up among seamen and pointed out: “I have worked in Hamburg’s shipping sector for eight years and want to reach local shipping companies and banks with our solution.”
Hamburg becoming digital leader
In August, the Digital-Hub Logistics opened in Hamburg and DemoGate is promoting digitalisation there. Hamburg is promoting synergies and innovative digital solutions and in early November, the city won the bid to host the Intelligent Transport Systems (ITS) World Congress in 2021 after a delegation headed by Frank Horch, Senator for Economics, Transport and Innovation, travelled to Montreal. Hamburg is likely to receive a huge boost in innovation and to become Germany’s model city of intelligent transport and logistics, which requires greater emphasis on digitalisation, experts agree.