Who is?

Hi. I am a shipping company director, transport academic, author, family man and all round nice guy. I have worked as shipbroker, shipowner, freight trader and bulk charterer, in senior positions, with some of the largest and most disrespected (joke) companies in the world. Ask my advice on all things shipping and you will receive my blunt and always honest answer. Hang around to learn more about chartering and ship broker salaries, chartering and ship broker jobs, chartering and shipbroker recruitment agencies, cheap freight, maritime education, chartering and ship broker qualifications, become a ship broker, tips on how to be a successful bulk shipping executive, philosophy, Zen and the art of shipbroking, and much more. Yours The Virtual Shipbroker (recently proclaimed the guru of shipbroking) Copyright © 2009-17 by Virtualshipbroker

Monday, November 17, 2014

VS Tour - I'm off!

Visiting - making myself available to a few friends / clients over the next 3 weeks. London, Geneva, Italy, Spain and Doha.

Look forward to seeing you all.

New blog post (by me) will be in a short hiatus over this time..

Keep rocking
VS


Thursday, November 6, 2014

What to do?

Qte

Dear VS

I am a dry cargo broker just under a year now, i've been in non bulk sector before, all together 3 years in shipping sector in London. In this current tight dry bulk market i feel a lot of frustration especially being new broker. I start to doubt whether I shall continue investing myself into dry and expect it to get little busier in the next 5 years, or whilst not too late switch into to other chartering/broking sector (tankers/gas). 
Thoughts of changing location and abandoning Europe is also keep popping up in my mind. Dubai, Feast seem to be more perspective locations for young motivated guys (and girls) with solid shipping base.

What do you think? Apprec for your tips and comments in my not so easy daily "plan B" thinking.

Brgds 

Unqte

Many thanks question and yes it is a tough time for everyone including trainees / young brokers. The market is crap. What you are doing (your thought process) is entirely appropriate and part of a necessary in built risk mitigation gene that all good brokers and wise people should have and cultivate.

FWIW I am always thinking 1,2 - 5 years ahead, considering scenarios and potentialities. This however needs to be weighed against the benefits of knowing when to stay still and be content. There is a time for everything. 

Your reading of the global situation is pretty good. The risk of staying in London waiting for the market to improve is that the East is growing and shipping power has seen a large shift to Singapore and other asian cities.
You also run the risk of getting bored or getting sacked if work doesn't come your way (in london).

My advice to most things is rarely dogmatic and this is no exception. You need to hustle...keep working hard in London but be on the look out for other opportunities...

There isnt necessarily a right or wrong answer but 'be prepared' to take advantage of a new opportunity even if it involves shifting your comfort zone.

So keep hustling and when an opportunity arises you should know then and there if its the right one to pursue.

Best luck - keep rocking and happy fixing...

A philisophical VS

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

A good question regarding landing a big client..

Quote

Dear VS

Good afternoon!

I love your blog, cause it's really useful and reliable source of shipbroking information.

Can you please share your experience while doing business with big corporations?

You obviously know a lot of them by paying visits to international fairs and conferences.

All of big Charterers and Owners have their own chartering departments and my conversation with them usually ends with:"You are a good guy, but we have our panel brokers, who manage to find tonnage/cargoes for our needs" or "We have enough brokers in our list, so aren't looking to improve it".

I know numerous traders, buyers, shippers, but even they can't give an order or advice to their shipping department regarding freight arrangement. I've even asked whether any procedure to become 'panel list broker' , but my efforts are effortless.

Do you have any idea how is possible to manage this gap or shall I drop it?

Pleased to hear your opinion.

Regards,
KN

Unquote

Dear KN

It's an interesting question and one that i cover quite extensively in 'starting a shipbroking business' - a great read even if I do say so myself....

BTW i realized the other day that I haven't read my own books for at least 3 years. I might do my self a favor and buy a copy. Just kidding - i don't need to buy a copy of my own book.......i'm sure my wife has one.

Anyway back to the question from KN

My short answer is this




You need to be more than just a good guy...

What can you give them that others already don't...

Answer that and you are part way to securing more clients..

Oh - and yes check out the book when you get the chance

VS

Monday, October 20, 2014

An excellent question about bunkers

Quote

Dear VS,

Good day to you!

I recently graduated with a degree in Economics, and am a Trainee with a large Shipbroking firm. Am really new to the industry, and I’ve got a question for you:

In view of the current falling bunker prices, what do u reckon will the market respond, from the perspective of 1) the shipowners, and 2) the charterers (aka the cargo owners). 

Obviously the VOY equiv rates (converted from TC rates) will fall. Will owners respond by increasing the TC rates? Is only APS rates affected, only DOP, or both will be affected? From the other perspective, what will happen to the VOY rates as well?


Thanks, and will really be glad to get a response! 

unquote

Thanks for making contact and a good question. Yes the prices of bunkers (the fuel that powers ships) has been smashed over recent months. 




As to how the market will respond? well pretty simple really. Bunkers are a cost of doing business (for the shipowner). Therefore when a shipowner rates (calculates a price) for a piece of voyage business, with low bunker prices brings a lower price. This is unavoidable. Because shipping is a fairly pure market a shipowner must reduce prices as input costs reduce. If they don't they will lose the business to the competition. 

So yes voyage rates will fall. TC rates aren't imo overly concerned with prices of bunkers. TC rates (time charter rates) reflect the balance between the supply and demand for vessels. A small reaction could be that with smaller input costs ship owners may be more willing to take the longer road to somewhere and avoid canals that have fixed costs. This will suck up supply and potentially push up tc rates. But rates are already so low and shipowners already doing this so I doubt any impact.

Your question about aps vs dop (on a tc basis) is a good one. APS rates (including BB's) should be a little cheaper because the cost to ballast includes bunkers. DOP rates on a tc basis should remain the same.

Keep rockin

VS


Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Can anyone help with Pavels' excellent question?


Quote


Hi!
Tell me pls something like 'del Canakkale via BlSea redel EMed - 6k daily' can be automatically considered as DOP rate? I mean if the owner finished his previous biz let's say in Piraeus and then he ballasted his vessel to Canakkale to hold it there idle waiting for new proposals. In this case Canakkale can't be actually called as 'last port of discharge'. So can this 'del Canakkale via BlSea redel EMed' still be considered as DOP?
P.S. Hope my definitions and explanatios are clear. Many thanks.

Unqte

Go on - I dare someone to answer! Lets get interactive here!!!!!!!!!!!!!

John Fredrikson - A shipping billionaire

From a reader

Quote

Hey VS,

I love your blog! Maybe I'm just not looking hard enough, but no other website out there provides the value that yours does. I instinctively get the feeling there isn't a better site in terms of shipping than yours, because I love this industry and have scoured the web for hours looking for shipping websites.

I have a quick question for you, as you are someone I respect and you also have tons of insight into this industry. What separates the average joe from someone like Mr. Fredriksen? His family was working class, but he still managed to build an empire for himself.

He "started trading oil in the 1960s in Beirut, bought his first tankers in the 1970s, ran crude oil for Iran in the 1980s." How do you go from simply trading to buying tankers worth millions upon millions of dollars? Why Beirut? Did he go for the connections?

I'd be very appreciative of any insight you could give here!

Best regards,

James

Unqte


Good question! I will write an answer in the next day or two. If any readers want to have a go at the answer shoot!

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

commission only?

 
Hi VS

Im new in this game as a shipbroker and have been in the business as a broker for 12 month now.

I did my first fixture after 6 month and since I have kept on going and I have accumulated for about 100.000 USD.

I have been offered a new contract where there is a amount of fixed cost, after I have passed that amount I will get commission in different stages.

Example: fixed cost per year 50.000 USD , after that will I get commission at 15% and when I from 100.000 I till get 17% and so on

Is that common, that you have a fixed amount you have to pass before you will get your commission ?

And can you tell me how a contract for a shipbroker normally is salary wise?

Best regards
JE
 
unqte
 
Hi JE
 
Many thanks email.
 
I am a little confiused by your email. Are you saying you do not get paid at all until you cover your fixed costs? How do you eat and live before you crack the usd 50,000?
 
VS
 

Sunday, July 27, 2014

Im still here!

An extended holiday in FIJI

So shoot me!

Will post something interesting (i hope so anyway) very soon..

Thanks all the messages - slowly replying to all..

Monday, June 16, 2014

World Cup and other inconveniences

I am in the privileged if not slightly annoying (to others) position of being able to support a number of countries in this world cup.

I reserve the right to claim which ever country (of my multi origin background) suits at any particular time.

There is my country first....I was born here and I am a proud citizen. We aren't the best at football but we punch above our weight..

Then I have Dutch, Belgium and English Heritage...(amongst a few others that dont play football)

With that mix I should have been a better footballer but I do alright running around on the weekends with an increasingly older cohort if people trying to hold on to whats left of our youth.

My son goes ok at football. Is it too young (8 years old) to expect my son to be proficient at tiki taka, juggling and be able to run for 45 minutes...



I really need a parenting handbook. I dont want him growing up as neurotic as me..

++

Shipping markets - ok there is no two ways about it. markets are CRAP! After early 2014 positivity the entire market has shat itself along with the collective morale of anyone long on ships!

We are seeing lots of manoeuvres amongst those with too much tonnage. The wise head owners are looking at accepting / re negotiating freight rates DOWN. If not the expose themselves to counter party bankruptcies especially if the doldrums set in once again...

Did i just say 'bankruptsies'? Shit I thought we were past that...

Stay positive people!!!!

Oh - Im picking Belgium to raise the cup in 6 weeks time...

VS

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Advice for trainees

Quote
 
Dear VS
 
good to hear you are still on, me and a friend (in Northern Europe), just started as trainees on different bulk shipping companies so we are part of this whole new way of life and heavy drinking style:
 
Compulsory as my boss said once.
 
Anyway, we are both going at some point to the chartering department, and we both were loooking at your blog and books.
 
Since we are not 100% related to the broker part of the shipping industry, but still very close to the whole thing, i would like you to recommend us, which of your books will be helpful for us taking into account we are in the chartering department?. as owner and charterers of course.
 
thanks for your guidance
Peter
 
 
Unquote
 
Hi Peter
 
Yes the world of bulk shipping is a baptism of fire for young people. My advice is yes partake in the social side and yes it is expected in most 'shipping scenes' around the globe. But imprtantly stay balanced. Keep fit and have hobbies outside of shipping. Don't let the social side eat you up and spit you out 20 kg heavier, with a drinking problem and 3 divorces.
 
Best book for you is Inside Shipbroking and / or Fast track. Both will give you lots of perspective in terms of why things happen and how you can make the best fo your first few years in the industry.
 
Otherwise have a drink or two on me!
 
VS

Sunday, May 25, 2014

The Big Apple

Have a friend of the blog looking for an entry level shipping documentation candidate in New York..

Anyone interested drop me a line..

VS

Whats happening in the markets?

Well they are pretty flat to be honest. One week there is cause for positivity, the next its all doom and gloom. This prolonged bear market continues to cause fractures, and initiate change. One of the biggest change in the broking world is the recently announced meger (actually a takeover) between two large shops - Braemar Seascope and ACM.

There is some debate amongst the power brokers, especially those with much to lose, as to whether this is a trend that should be followed. The reasoning is that the new post boom world of shipping, shipbrokers need to be LARGE to protect themselves, or equally "prosper" - leaving the middle sized shops to die a slow death.

Its an interesting discussion because im still not convinced that the current rationalization isn't purely market forces at play. A cyclical series of events that have little to do with whats happening 'on the ground' in various broker markets around the globe.

The large (usually publicly listed) shops have many masters to serve. They also have head honchos that are juggling different growth strategies, business models, etc with an eye on the BIG picture.

On the ground however is a different story. For us 'transactional brokers' not much has changed in our parts of the world. Whilst the big guys play big guy games, most of us get down and dirty doing the job the brokers do - Fixing Ships!...

And the keys to suiccess here havent changed too much. Stay on the phones, build relationships, watch the email, carry your blackberry or Iphone everywhere....and hussle....move...work the clients and make money.

If a group of people in the same office are good at the above it doesnt make any difference how big, medium or small you are - you will make money. The problem with large shops...is that they can give good service but that service by its nature tends to be homogeneous...the same for everyone. So if the protagonists are playing a standard type of game then this is a good option. For those not so mainstream, looking for an edge (which is commonly the case) small, medium and / or niche is a very good option.

Keep rockin
VS

Monday, May 5, 2014

Shipping Salaries (a good question)

From a close friend of the blog (ad a new entrant)

Quote


Hello VS,


I was just wondering, if a broker's earning potential is influenced by the country he is working in. If i remember correctly, a broker's total income (base + bonus. Correct me if im wrong) is, in general 1/3 of the commission brought in by him. If that's the case, wouldn't it be better for a broker to work from a place with a relatively low cost of living? 

Thanks,

Unquote

A good question. And generally you are correct. But there tends to be two salary rates in many developing nations. One for 'expats' and one for 'locals'. Certainly for an expat being able to earn 'western' dollars while living in a developing country is very attractive. For more established locals they too will also (probably a bit slower) start hitting pay dirt after a while but this is sometimes no always so easy. (Entry level wages for locals tends to be at local rates)

The good news for 'locals' is that this disparity is closing over the last 5 or 6 years.

Finally - probably the best way to answer your question is with a simple yes. The entire industry uses a common currency (USD) - so if you live in a developing nation with a currency that is valued much lower than the USD - when you convert you are a king!....The opposite is also the case. Currency values play an important role in the wealth of shipping companies and employees alike.

great question

VS




Tuesday, April 22, 2014

For the spiritually diverse with a sense of humor!

HELL EXPLAINED BY PHYSICS STUDENT

The following is an actual question given on a Physics Exam in the USA. The
answer by one student was so "profound" the professor decided to share
it with colleagues, via the Internet,

I thought it was funny and tried to spin it into a shipping yarn but no matter what i came up with it didn't work. I do know that the shipping people I know think about Hell a lot...usually after 2 am...

Anyway......

So here is the original version.

Quote

Bonus Question: Is Hell exothermic (gives off heat) or
endothermic (absorbs heat)?

Most of the students wrote proofs of their beliefs
using Boyle's Law (gas cools when it expands and heats
when it is compressed) or some variant.

One student, however, wrote the following:

First, we need to know how the mass of Hell is
changing in time.
So we need to know the rate at which souls are moving
into Hell and t he rate at which they are leaving. I
think that we can safely assume that once a soul gets
to Hell, it will not leave. Therefore, no souls are
leaving.

As for how many souls are entering Hell, let's look at
the different religions that exist in the world today.
Most of these religions state that if you are not a
member of their religion, you will go to Hell. Since
there is more than one of these religions and since
people do not belong to more than one religion, we can
project that all souls go to Hell.

With birth and death rates as they are, we can expect
the number of souls in Hell to increase exponentially.
Now, we look at the rate of change of the volume in
Hell because Boyle's Law states that in order for the
temperature and pressure in Hell to stay the same, the
volume of Hell has to expand proportionately as souls
are added.

This gives two possibilities:

1. If Hell is expanding at a slower rate than the rate
at which souls enter Hell, then the temperature and
pressure in Hell will increase until all Hell breaks
loose.
2. If Hell is expanding at a rate faster than the
increase of souls in Hell, then the temperature and
pressure will drop until Hell freezes over.

So which is it?

If we accept the postulate given to me by Teresa
during my Freshman year that, "it will be a cold day
in Hell before I sleep with you, and take into account
the fact that I slept with her last night, then number
two must be true, and thus I am sure that Hell is
exothermic and has already frozen over.
The corollary of this theory is that since Hell has
frozen over, it follows that it is not accepting any
more souls and is therefore, extinct...leaving only
Heaven thereby proving the existence of a divine being
which explains why, last night, Teresa kept shouting
"Oh my God."

THIS STUDENT RECEIVED THE ONLY "A"

++

Nice work!

Saturday, April 12, 2014

The social side of shipping

From a friend in China

quote

Hey vs,

I was just wondering if "entertaining" is commonplace in the broking industry over in the west. I was pressured to go out by my seniors yesterday, for drinks at a karaoke bar. A charterer was there too. Had to sing, and they kept handing out beers. Don't get me wrong, I like beer, just not drinking it excessively for the sake of getting drunk.

unquote

Yep this is pretty common place. As it is in most high flying professions like banking, trading and even the law. Some of the most debaucherous (spelling?) behaviour I've seen has been carried out by multimillionaires from all different races, nationalities and even sexes.

You should read what those crazy french royal family used to get up to before the revolution in the late 1700's.



The good news is that although some compromise is needed, if you are uncomfortable with the overt social culture of chartering, you can be a clean skin. After a few years of social ostracism and some ribbing, if you stay true to your self you will be respected either way. 

But yes if you thought shipping was full of well dressed respectable people then you are only half right...lol..

I did tell on this blog that a few years back I met Jordan Belfort the real wolf of Walls st (after he spent time in jail) socially while on holidays. After a 30 minute chat he actually suggested that we go out for dinner (with the wives) and I quickly and politely declined letting him know that he and I move in different circles. I told him that a big night out for me these days is a glass of wine, an occasional cigarette and in bed by 10pm

I'm not joking either...........living on the edge people... 

How many people would knock back an invitation to party with the wolf of wall st???

(now that i put it like that.......what was i thinking?)

VS

Saturday, April 5, 2014

Love this email


I have changed one or two points to protect anonymity - but its a great story.

I hope she doesn't mind (doh)

Quote

Hi VS,

Hope you are well.

I don't know you and you don't know me, so I'll be frank.

In short I'm a 26 year old second generation British female going on 27 with nothing to show apart from a divorce and extortionate university fees to repay. I have a BA and MSc under my belt from a redbrick University in Business and currently working in shipping for a fashion supplier going stale. When I was younger no way in hell did I envisage myself in this pothole but nothing in life goes to plan lol. I had great visions of happiness and success like all but growing up and life experiences give you wisdom. Happiness is acceptance and I accept I need to make drastic changes now in order to attain the latter. Success I can attain and happiness is the constant. Funnily my unhappiness is so obvious, that when a new manager joined my team suggested that I look into ship brokering. She has worked for shipping lines, freight forwarders and has experience in vessel chartering and she believes I would be cut out for it. In her words I take no shit from no one within reason of course and I always want to know why. I'm hungry for new challenges and have a burning desire to break free from the mundane 9-5 and make something of myself. So I have started researching and I'm falling in love with the idea of ship brokering.

This is preliminary research and I strongly believe second to actually doing the job the best way to understand something is to talk to a person who has lived it. I would much appreciate it if you could answer the below questions and address the concerns I have:

How would you describe the job bluntly (good and bad)?

I know I'm intelligent, hard working, a fast learner, thick skinned and outspoken coupled with my background is this enough? 

In an industry which is male dominated, does the glass extend from the ceiling to the door?

What steps do I need to take to become a ship broker?

Can you recommend other sources of research, reading, people to talk to etc....

I eagerly look forward to hearing from you

Kind regards


Unquote


I would hire this woman but Bhutan isn't really the centre of shipping these days...so if anyone is 'on the hire' drop me a line and I will put you in touch...

PS - I don't usually do this (offer to pass on job offers) but this email made me laugh and convinced me that this person would be a formidable person to deal with in the shipbroking world. If many readers could channel this 'vibe' and level of honesty it would imo open up many doors. Well done.

VS

Saturday, March 29, 2014

Shipping smiles ready to return?

Its now quite some time since the GFC and the catastrophic drop in the BDI that accompanied it. I had a currency trader ask me just the other day about the BDI....."where's it at?" he asked. I quickly jibbed back "irrelevant for you guys" for a few more years to come.

You see the daily machinations of the BDI (Baltic Dry Index) was once seen as an almost mystical insight into the future health of the economic universe. A rising BDI meant countries were trading more - and this logically meant growth.

Alas the BDI celebrity bubble burst when this canary of the sea's became more about supply side ridiculousness than the health and wealth of nations.

China exploded and the shipping industry went NUTS! Collectively Bezerk! We spent, ordered, wined and dined like there was no tomorrow. And gee it was good! So good I semi retired.....but that's a whole new story...

What's interesting is that after the shipping equivalent of the great depression (the normal result of going Bezerk for too long)......i'm sensing more than just wishful thinking amongst the throng of well dressed and slightly older shipping frat shops.

Shipbrokers are expanding, dry bulk IPO's are back on the agenda, Shipowners are starting to order ships again and chartering exec's are renewing our love affair with business class lounges and fully reclinable seats ......Thank god for that! Can this really be true?

Save for the recent drop in Iron Prices, and the usual banter about Chinese house price - I could be excused for doing a cartwheel or two (which btw is easier in the high altitude mountains of Bhutan).

I'm finding it hard to find a good dentist...but I can't stop smiling


Lets not get ahead of ourselves but my crystal ball is looking clearer all the time.

If you aint in 'the game' yet.....maybe it's time to make a move!

Yours The Virtual Shipbroker



Sunday, March 23, 2014

Thanks patience....life is good

Thanks to all the readers who have kept in touch. I am glad you never lost patience. The good news is that there is so much content on the blog that newcomers and regulars still have heaps to interact with.

Case in point from a new reader

quote

You should have seen our surprise when we found your blog. To my friend, it is like a validation of what he have to go through in on the spot, all these questions which he painfully discovered. To me, never heard of the word dry bulk before, I was able to go from knowing nothing to being able to analyse, discuss and think about issues. I finished reading the blog in 3 weeks (will probably go through all of it once more). We also bought the 4 books and went through them and the voyage estimation together. Thank you for writing the blog, really. I hope that you are well with all that you are up to. Hope to see a post once in a while.

unquote



I have enjoyed taking some time away from the blog and am full of beans ready to go




Word of advice - For Breakfast - if you mix baked beans (organic) with raw Sauerkraut, eggs (organic) and garlic - don't expect too much love from the wife for at least 2 days...

lesson learnt

great detox though but was it worth it?

VS

Shipping Jobs Singapore - So whats happening in Singapore for the next 12 months?

Nice article appeared in Hellenic Shipping news.

The clever Singaporeans have certainly cemented themselves (arguably) as the center of the shipping word these days....

I remember back in 2000 when bulk shipping was still a very niche industry. 

Anyway - seems onwards and upwards - may the prosperity continue!

quote

2014 will see owners take delivery of thousands of newbuild vessels and more ships on the water means more people needed in shore-based roles.

Right now the global newbuild order book is standing at over 4,000 cargo ships and close to 1,000 OSVs. Every week brings fresh stories of owners inking new orders - the world fleet will continue to expand into 2015, 2016 and beyond.

This translates, basically, into more jobs: a good commercial Operator can handle around 10 ships, so every time the global fleet increases by 10 that is 1 new Operator job created.

On the technical management side a Technical Superintendent can typically manage around 5 ships and a Marine Superintendent anything up to 15. More ships mean more people.

Along with these Operators and Superintendents, more Crewing and Chartering professionals will be hired, not to mention the associated support staff and management required.

So, 100 new ships on the water can directly create 50 or more new shipping jobs on-shore. And these will be followed by the indirect jobs this creates at the various suppliers, agents, brokers, lawyers, and insurers.

So where does Singapore stand in this? There is no doubt that in bulk shipping Singapore is commercially the best in Asia and will continue to attract more international shipping players. The Global Trader Programme, offering reduced tax for commodity traders, means there are now 300 commodity traders with $100m+ revenues in the Lion City.

With all these cargo interests in Singapore, brokers and operators have to have a presence here, and for ship-owners commercial representation a necessity. Nowhere else can offer so much shipping business opportunity in one place, and in Singapore most of your clients are only a 10 minute taxi ride away.

Unquestionably, government policies affect the employment market in Singapore shipping. The tax benefits offered to shipping companies helped to establish Singapore’s current strong position by attracting international shipping companies en masse in 2006-2008.

As markets continue to improve in 2014, and ship owning becomes profitable again, these tax incentives will once again become more attractive; saving money on tax bills is really only of interest to companies that are making profits!

Again influenced by government policy, the people market in Singapore is slowly changing. The real change is coming from an improvement in the local talent pool driven by education – since 2009 NTU Maritime Studies BSc programme has graduated around 60-70 bright young candidates every year and many of the established shipping companies hire trainees from this talent pool.

SMU now offers a Maritime Economics Concentration and will be graduating students from 2015. In addition, the Polytechnics are offering world-leading Diploma courses and provide an excellent training environment and career path for Singaporeans to develop careers on-shore and at sea.

Changes to regulations in employing foreigners have had some effect, and firms now look to hire locally first for positions where the skills are available.

Senior positions though are largely unaffected by these changes as C-level and Director level roles are not given to people as career development opportunities – companies need the best possible people in these roles regardless of nationality, and not enough Singaporeans have the sea-going experience required to fill the technical roles available.

It is not an exaggeration to say that Singapore is the city with the highest concentration of diverse shipping talent in the world. The shipping industry in Singapore is a cultural rojak with 5,000+ shipping and maritime companies representing practically every country on earth.

With the city being the leading maritime centre in Asia - and now vying with London to be the Maritime Capital of the World, there is an undoubted need for diverse and highly skilled international talent.

International shipping companies will always want to maintain links to their home country, and when your clients come from all over the world it makes commercial sense to have a diverse workforce.

When managed well everyone benefits from this cross-pollination – foreign talent in Singapore gains exposure to a dynamic Asian market and gets the global experience to fast-track a career (not to mention access to a wealth of new career opportunities at competitor firms).

Singaporeans benefit from world-class shipping companies investing in developing local talent who ultimately benefit from exposure to international best-practice.

More ships on the water means more people employed on shore. Companies will continue to hire people in Singapore because if you want low / no tax, access to the top talent globally, to be in close proximity to your clients and counterparties, then Singapore is the place to be.

Whether or not the shipping markets continue to pick up in 2014 and beyond, the industry in Singapore will remain strong and good shipping talent will be in demand.
Source: SBR

unquote

VS

Friday, January 3, 2014

Happy festive season to all!

Happy Christian New year / Festive season to all....regardless of belief systems and cultures the shipping industry does quieten down for a few weeks.

And yes I am still here and yes I am still selling books and providing consultancy. I am just on a small hiatus with regards to making blog posts...

But do not worry - this blog will be around for many years yet....sometimes one just needs an occasional break...(read burn out!)

So please keep reading the 5 years worth of information provided and keep sending me messages and I will try and respond when I get the chance.

I am incredibly appreciative of all the readers, followers and customers of this blog.

VS