ShipServ, the world’s largest maritime e-procurement platform, today announced an extension to its partnership with the International Marine Purchasing Association (IMPA). The partnership will see ShipServ using IMPA’s Marine Stores Guide codes throughout its platforms and search engines as well as becoming an authorised reseller of the newly created Publisher Licence.
IMPA’s Marine Stores Guide (MSG) is the most widely used reference source for maritime purchasing and supply, providing high quality and accurate procurement data to the market. The partnership between ShipServ and IMPA will drive greater use of MSG content, further reducing uncertainty within the procurement process and driving efficiencies.
Manufacturers and wholesalers using ShipServ who have purchased the new Publisher Licence will, for the first time, be able to officially use IMPA codes and their descriptions in all sales and marketing material, including product brochures, catalogues, and websites as well as ShipServ.
Under the revised agreement, the IMPA code database will be added into results on both ShipServ Pages, the online marine search engine, as well as ShipServ Onboard, a comprehensive digital catalogue and ordering guide available on DVD and USB and used by vessels and crew at sea.
With the MSG information added into ShipServ’s search engines, users will benefit from increased functionality, including the ability to conduct single code and description look-ups, as well as being able to see the code hierarchy. Buyers will also benefit from being able to see which suppliers can provide products behind the codes being searched.
Once the ShipServ search engines have been enhanced in this way, IMPA codes will be an integral part of every applicable search result. By combining the pre-existing “IMPA Web” search, which has been powered by ShipServ for many years, with ShipServ Pages, this will create a “best of both worlds” result for the users. This will enable suppliers to leverage both ShipServ Pages and ShipServ Onboard to gain significantly more exposure, and buyers to source items immediately upon finding them.
As part of the agreement, ShipServ will also act as a facilitator of information between suppliers and IMPA, including providing information on products which are not currently mapped to IMPA codes. This will ensure the continual improvement and growth of the Marine Stores Guide to the benefit of all suppliers and buyers.
Commenting on the extended partnership, Stephen Alexander, chief operating officer, IMPA said:
“ShipServ and IMPA are both fully committed to optimising the procurement process by enabling the quick and easy access of MSG content. We are pleased to extend our partnership with ShipServ, using their advanced platforms and experience to ensure that the IMPA code standard continues to provide high quality procurement data to the market, further reducing uncertainties when it comes to purchasing products, and increasing efficiencies.”
Don Staffin, executive vice president for ShipServ and responsible for global partnerships, said:
“This is a key development for ShipServ as it's part of the strategic move towards higher quality data and greater use of catalogues in our industry, which will lead to better, lower cost, purchasing. So we are delighted to extend our partnership with IMPA. To take full advantage of this capability, suppliers need to upload their product catalogue to ShipServ, and importantly, have IMPA codes included. To help this process, ShipServ will provide a service that helps suppliers build their catalogues, as well as adding IMPA numbers. Suppliers will need to purchase a Publisher Licence if they use IMPA codes on ShipServ.”
IMPA’s Marine Stores Guide Codes will be added to ShipServ Pages, which is always free to use, in the coming months. The next edition of ShipServ Onboard – the 61st annual edition – will include an unlocked version of the Marine Stores Guide and will be available in both DVD and USB formats at no cost for all buyers from July 2018. Free copies can be requested from ShipServ at www.shipserv.com.