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In very simple terms, what is DA-Desk?

A platform you use (or connect your VMS to) to automate your entire DA process.

Using the system is super simple, you only have three touchpoints:

  • You appoint the agent (using your own preferred agents or our directory of 9,000+ agents)
    – Agent submits the PDA
    – We run checks on the PDA using 1,500 validation rules
    – We query the agent on any cost item
  • You approve the PDA
    – We execute the advance payment once all compliance & sanctions checks have been made
    – Agent submits the FDA
    – We run checks on the FDA using 1,500 validation rules again
  • You approve the FDA
    – We make the final payments (after multiple frauds and compliance checks)
    – All documents and invoices are stored for easy access in the future

It really cannot be any simpler and the platform is very straightforward to use too.

We provide highly rated 24/7 customer support.

PDA Port Charges

Benefits and savings from using DA-Desk

There are two types of benefits you get as a DA-Desk customer.

The savings are 100% visible and measurable.  See below for a detailed breakdown.

Additionally, there are 7 key benefits, which are slightly more difficult to put a $ number on, but which are very valuable.

In fact, most of our customers tell us that these key benefits are more valuable to them than the fully quantifiable ones.

Accounting For Shipping Company

7 key benefits, all come built-in for DA-Desk customers….

Anti-Money laundering and anti-corruption – our processes

  • Matching of the payments’ currencies and domiciles
  • Provision of daily, weekly or monthly reconciliation reports
  • PDA vs. FDA – Financial evaluations and credible verification of costs where possible improprieties are flagged, such as lack of invoice, questionable invoices, lack of product/service

For your agents and suppliers, our compliance processes include:

  • Checks on all your agents and their bank accounts
  • Enhanced cyber risk/fraud protection (e.g., against phishing attempts)
  • Assurance that all vendors and agents are dynamically screened against sanctions
  • Due diligence checks on all agents appointed
  • Auditable anti-money laundering and anti-bribery compliance

For your Payments, our compliance processes include:

  • We have invested in bank-grade compliance tools
  • Ability to conduct real-time checks
  • Checking each payment multiple times
  • The final check is performed 1.5 sec before the payment goes to the bank
  • Whitelisting is logged and can be audited

Here’s a visual summary of our checks:

 

“The ops team is swamped with work and over maximum capacity.”

We hear this a lot!

This is the #1 problem DA-Desk solves.

We provide end-to-end digitisation and automation of manual tasks, which frees up the time of your ops teams.

They can use this freed-up time to work on value add activities to drive your business forward.

This is an often-overlooked benefit but we get regular feedback from existing customers on how important this change was after moving to DA-Desk.

Cashflow improvements come from 2 sources:

  • We review, check and validate EVERY SINGLE ONE of your PDAs (as well as the FDAs), and so find items that should be removed – we then discuss with the agent directly, meaning you advance less in the PDA

 

  • We often advance a lower % of the FDA (as the PDA) that you are currently making – after agreement with yourselves

DA-Desk comes with its own payments dashboard.

You know exactly the status of your payments.

And because it’s fully connected with your PDAs and FDAs in real-time, you can see exactly what cash flow requirements are.

Ideal for the finance team to save time.

Here’s an image of the dashboard.

With DA-Desk, all your DAs are digital, stored conveniently together in one interface, and also securely in the cloud

This means you:
  • never lose track of a current or historic DA 
  • can do as much analysis as you like using our tools

 

There are 9 core reports, as well as the ability to produce tailored reports as you require.

 

Analysis / Reports available include:

  • Compare PDA vs FDA
  • Compare DAs
  • Final DA operator to agree summary
  • Main DAs
  • DA Timelines
  • Final DA overdue
  • Cost items
  • Final DA operator to agree
  • Final DAs under clarification

 

Here’s a screenshot of the reporting dashboard:

An extensive document, prepared specifically for you by our research team and your account manager.

We call it the PVR (Process Value Review).

It shows you the exact value of the savings you got in the last 12 months from DA-Desk, PortsDirect and PortPayables – that is to say, it quantifies all the savings to actually obtained from the savings we are discussing on this page.

And the live chat is with a real person and not a bot!

Measurable savings – up to $700 per typical port call

For a typical vessel, using DA-Desk results in savings of up to $700 per port call.

For a fleet of 40 vessels making 800 port calls a year, that is a total of $560,000 savings every year.

Platform / digitisation savings

FDA checks – value of credit notes

Supplier discounts

Payments savings - FX

Payments savings – Transaction/fees/bank charges

$700

Total savings per port call

For us at DA-Desk, we believe there’s no such thing as an average customer.

But, just this once, to keep this analysis simple, we’re showing savings for an average vessel type.

But….

The savings figures which our customers actually get from DA-Desk vary greatly depending on a whole host of factors, including:

  • trading pattern
  • size of fleet and vessel types
  • number of direct agreements with suppliers
  • freight income (currency).

If you want a more tailored savings report based on your fleet’s characteristics, our sales team would be happy to oblige.

What we mean by “average” in this report

These are typical values of savings for customers who:

  • use DA-Desk and its two connected products: PortPayables (our payments solution, how we pay your DA’s) and PortsDirect (discounted rate agreements on port services, especially towage); and
  • who operate primarily the most common type of vessel we see on DA-Desk which is large bulk vessels and large oil and chemical vessels.

If we analyse customers with very large vessel types these savings numbers will be bigger.

If we analyse customers with mainly small vessels then these savings numbers will be smaller.

So these typical / average numbers are meant as an indication of savings.

Calculating the actual numbers

For our customers with average vessel types we obtained their savings as per their Process Value Review document (which is a report we issue and discuss with every DA-Desk customer once a year, to show them the savings they have obtained from us).

We then did a straight average of the savings to get an average saving per customer.

DA-Desk is a digital platform to manage and issue all your DAs.

Digitalisation savings result in the following ways:

Operational Benefits

  • Time savings for your team – free them up to work on more value add activities, and not the paperwork
  • All documents, DAs, payments and SOAs at your fingertips – saves time
  • Process efficiency gain and data quality improvement by automating data capture into IMOS and SAP, eliminating manual data entry
  • Benefit from benchmarking capabilities of 200,000 port calls annually
  • Full visibility of and access to transactional and port cost data (learning loop)
  • Ensuring every port call is costed accurately
  • Enhancing operators’ control and understanding of port cost without adding significant workload

 

Organisational Benefits

  • Ability to scale up without hiring additional resources
  • A web-based system that supports multiple processes
  • A digital process and information flow linking all departments

 

 

We carry out a series of checks and validations on EVERY SINGLE PDA and FDA.

Using a combination of skilled experts, automation and AI.

DAVE – our Disbursement Account Validation Engine software – assists our large team of experts.

DAVE helps check that rebates are accounted for on every transaction, irrespective of the value.

DAVE uses a rule-based engine to ensure variable data relating to discounts and rebates is automatically extracted from the port call. An algorithm assisted by our master data of port regulations ensures the screener is alerted to any possible opportunity of port cost reductions on a DA.

On average we secure reductions on 11% of all PDAs and credit notes on 4% of all FDAs.

We will deal with agents directly in order to correct the overcharging.

An associated product closely tied to DA-Desk is our solution called PortsDirect – where you benefit from discounts we have negotiated from port suppliers, especially towage and pilotage.

We have a team dedicated to driving the best discounts from port suppliers in over 400 ports.

The net savings are derived by deducting the PortsDirect fee from the discounted amount which we obtain for customers off the vendor’s official tariffs.

Because we make payments for our customers of $10bn a year, we have negotiated access to preferential FX and bank payment fees/charges.

The bank charge and FX savings are calculated by working out the difference between what customers were paying prior to DA-Desk versus the lower rates they pay after taking DA-Desk.

Full quantification and breakdown of the savings are shown on the financial dashboard of each of our customers.

The best in class DA management software

99.4%

Retention

8.3 / 10

User rating

350+

Shipping companies

$10bn

Payments processed annually

200,000

Port calls per year

Customer score for DA-Desk

Data sources:

The overall rating is taken from recent customer satisfaction surveys that we conduct on a regular basis and send to all DA-Desk customers.

The other 3 metrics are from a 2021 external survey done on our behalf by Simon Kucher & Partners consultancy.

DA-Desk Customer Score

What do 350 of the world’s largest
trading houses and shipping
companies have in common?

They choose DA-Desk for their disbursements because we’ve built an entire digital ecosystem around you.

Our customers matter most

Marcura Testimonial1

“DA-Desk is always up-to-date with global port tariffs and with their huge database they also know which invoices are true and what can be challenged.
We see a clear difference in the quality and efficiency we can achieve and now just one person is able to manage the DAs of the entire company.”

Manish Jain,
Chief Operating Officer

“Marcura is the market leader in disbursement accounts and other platforms that come along with the port call process. Marcura can manage a high volume of port calls – and this was the main factor to come over Marcura.

Partnering with Marcura helps Eagle to perform better, to process accounts quicker and leverages on data and resources Marcura has all in one platform.”

Marc Radulovic,
Senior Operations Manager

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Seamless VMS integration – 85% of our customers are integrated

Our platforms integrate through our API  to the Voyage Management System( VMS) of your choice, providing an accurate and reliable two-way flow of complete information between them.

VMSs currently integrated with DA-Desk include:

  • Danaos
  • Dataloy by Dataloy Systems
  • Glomaris by E Foqus
  • IMOS
  • In-house customer systems
  • Q88VMS by Q88
  • ShipNet
  • Softmar by ION Group
VMS integration

27-day structured onboarding 

For all of our new users, our specialised team manages a structured 27-day process – the service level agreement currently defined is for the contract to go live in 27 days!

We work with you to set up contracts, agencies, payment accounts, automation flows, training so everything goes smoothly from day one.

Our comprehensive process includes:

  • Customer Due Diligence
  • Process mapping/information exchange
  • Configuration and system set up
  • Training
  • Hyper care support
  • Post Implementation Review

During onboarding and then for the first 4 months / 100 port calls, new customers are handled by our “Hyper Care” team. This proactive strategy ensures seamless processes during/after implementation as well as ironing out hiccups if any.

From the start, you’ll have access to 24/7 customer service, LiveChat, and a dedicated Key Account Manager.

Outsourcing Disbursement

Enabling your teams to work more efficiently and compliantly

Time-saving processes

Time-saving
processes

Improved analytics and insights free your Operators from protracted administration, giving them more time to focus on important issues.

Cost-effective Compliance

Cost-effective
Compliance

We go to great lengths to provide extra layers of compliance controls, confidentiality and information security to give you total visibility – at no extra cost.

Increased savings

Increased
savings

Improved analytics and insights free your Operators from protracted administration, giving them more time to focus on important issues.

Integration and control

Integration
and control

We go to great lengths to provide extra layers of compliance controls, confidentiality and information security to give you total visibility – at no extra cost.

Go to our product site or download the DA-Desk brochure

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