Predictive intelligence tech company Windward has launched Container Insights, a capability that provides live screening and tracking of containers and Bill of Lading (BOL) verification.
The new capability, which Windward says enhances the company’s current Cargo Insights, optimizes and increases the efficiency of screening processes for trade finance transactions and enables government agencies to investigate suspicious containers, providing them with a "holistic" view of vessels, behaviors, companies, and containers, all in one platform.
"Seven out of the twelve trillion dollars of seaborne trade are transported via containerized goods. As part of any due diligence process in a transaction, banks screen every company and vessel involved in the deal. Container numbers are included in the Bill of Lading (BOL) and Letter of Credit (LC) but do not necessarily contain the vessel IMO (International Maritime Organization) number making it difficult for banks to fully vet the transaction," Windward said.
Additionally, Windward said, as part of anti-money laundering and fraud processes, banks need to independently investigate and validate that those transactions indeed took place and were not used as methods of laundering money.
"Containers are also commonly used for the smuggling of illicit goods. For example, UNODC seizure data indicate that most of the cocaine available in European drug markets is smuggled to Europe by sea, primarily in maritime container shipments entering at major container ports such as Antwerp, Rotterdam, Hamburg, and Valencia. To counter this trend, governments need to have a full picture of all actors, vessels, and cargo within their domain and have the ability to identify suspicious activity before smuggled goods reach their shores," the company said.
Windward’s said its Container Insights allowed its clients to deal with those challenges by providing data and tracking information on any container of interest and connecting the container to any vessel, location, and entity.
"This unique ability enables users to monitor in real-time the location of the container, its status, and expected and scheduled ETA," the company said.
"Windward’s customers in the financial and insurance sectors can effortlessly screen containers of interest as part of their counterparty due diligence processes. The system also provides an independent validation capability for BOL verification and with insights on the actual delivery status, stakeholders can ensure critical transaction steps. Governments can leverage Container Insights to investigate leads regarding suspicious containers that are expected to arrive at a port. Ultimately, this data can support border control as well as customs and law enforcement operations in real-time," the company said.
“Windward is growing at an incredible pace. We are launching new capabilities, expanding our data sets, and continuously updating our behavioral models,” said Ami Daniel, CEO and Co-Founder of Windward. “Maritime trade is multi-faceted and often stakeholders don’t have all of the insights they need to fully assess the risks involved. Risk insights for containers of interest and BOL verification are essential for any entity that deals with global trade to understand the full picture of who they’re conducting business with. This new capability combined with our Company Risk and Vessel Insights provides our users with a one-stop-shop for all maritime trade operations.”