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