It is difficult to imagine today’s world without the ease of electronic salary payments, online and mobile banking. While the COVID-19 pandemic has further accelerated the digitalisation of banking, the shipping industry is still slow to ride on this wave. With BSM NiumPay, Bernhard Schulte Shipmanagement (BSM) intends to make digital payment more accessible to seafarers across the globe.
Bernhard Schulte Shipmanagement (BSM) has launched BSM NiumPay, a digital payment platform for its seafarers and their families to manage finances easily and efficiently. The new payment platform provides seafarers with a multi-currency eWallet and a complimentary VISA card. In addition, a supplementary VISA card is available for the seafarer’s family.
“Digital payments have become an essential part of our everyday lives; seafarers, however, are still very much dependent on cash on board and incur costly charges when sending money home”, says Dennis Moehlmann, Finance Manager at BSM. “With this new initiative, we are taking a big step ahead in digitalising the industry by not only reducing the use of cash aboard vessels but also by giving seafarers the freedom to quickly transfer funds from and to nearly all parts of the world using their mobile phones.”
With BSM NiumPay, seafarers can receive and send funds home in real-time, exchange money at best trading rates as well as withdraw cash at most ATMs worldwide. Furthermore, it includes a multi-currency account, allowing seafarers to manage their balances in all major currencies. Whenever an urgent advance payment is needed, the Master can easily top up the seafarer’s eWallet instantly.
The idea behind the unique platform was formed when BSM and its sister company Innoport, the corporate venturing arm of the Schulte Group, realised that existing solutions simply did not meet the complex requirements of a globally operating shipping company. Both companies then joined forces to fill this market gap.
“The eWallet is uniquely designed for BSM to meet the specific needs of seafarers, taking into account their global work environment. By partnering with Nium, a Singapore-based fintech company, we ensure that all services can be seamlessly and conveniently accessed through a single app on the user’s mobile phone”, explains Haymon Sinapius, Investment Manager at Innoport.
Following the first successful trials aboard ten vessels, BSM is now targeting a broad and fast implementation to connect its seafarers, vessel by vessel, starting with the Asia-Pacific region. Going forward, BSM will continue to share its experience in developing and implementing the platform with other interested vessel owners and ship managers, taking an active role in supporting the maritime industry in moving away from cash and reap the benefits of digitalisation.