Software solutions provider Softship has been selected as a ‘pre-approved vendor’ under the Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore’s (MPA) Sea Transport Industry Digital Plan (IDP), a SGD3.7million fund to support ship agency and harbour craft businesses in Singapore to build stronger digital capabilities.

Softship is one of only two companies to be listed by the MPA as a pre-approved vendor and provider of a maritime-specific digital solution for small and medium sized (SME) ship agency businesses seeking to upgrade their digital capabilities.  The Sea Transport IDP and @SMEGoDigital Programme was established to provide SMEs with step-by-step guidance to support them in the adoption of new digital solutions and provides a list of vetted and approved maritime-specific digital solutions which qualify under the grant.

As Softship have been pre-approved, Singapore-based ship agency SMEs can access Sea Transport IDP funding for up to 70%, or up to SGD$30,000, of the cost of Softship’s Advanced Port Agency Solution (Softship.SAPAS), a cloud-based software solution designed specifically for ship agency businesses. Softship.SAPAS allows ship agency businesses of any size to manage all port agency and husbandry activities through a single on-line platform, from any web-enabled device.

Lars Fischer, Managing Director, Softship Data Processing Singapore, said:

“Agents require software solutions that enable greater mobility so that staff can multitask, have better visibility over suppliers and transparency over accounting and customer relations.They must upgrade from Excel spreadsheets and basic IT tools to more fluid, reliable and future-proof software solutions based on cloud technology. This will make it possible for them to have the same IT capabilities as even the biggest global players.

 “The MPA has recognised the challenges that smaller and independent ship agency businesses face in what is a rapidly digitising maritime economy – and they recognise how valuable these businesses and individuals are to the Singapore maritime economy. Under the Sea Transport IDP, eligible ship agency businesses can benefit from this additional support and can continue to provide services that are vital to ship owners and operators calling at Singapore’s ports, and beyond.”