Twill has been closed in a test phase with a select number of customers, and from April 10, the platform will be openly available to the UK market, Twill said.
Twill’s online platform will allow customers to instantly place bookings, manage documentation and track shipments. The solution focuses on four key features, which include instant quotation, integrated document handling, milestone transparency and proactive exception management.
Initially, Twill is only focusing on managing ocean shipments within the China to UK trade, but will add more shipping routes and products over the coming months. In the first part of Twill’s expansion, the company will focus on the Asia-Europe trade, a Twill spokesperson told American Shipper.
Randa Accessories Logistics Manager Jo Southwell, who is already using the platform, said, “We were really pleased to be involved in the early stages of Twill’s development. Already the online platform is giving us improved visibility of our shipments meaning that we can see where our goods are in the supply chain at any given time. Previously, we relied on a lot of manual processes including emails back and forth with our team in China, but Twill allows us to see all information in one place and it is so simple to use.”
A Damco executive told American Shipper Tuesday that Twill is designed to target a segment of smaller and more transactional customers that the company had largely overlooked in years past. The product is designed to compete with an emerging class of digital-first forwarders, such as Flexport, iContainers and Kontainers. Damco feels the new digital front end provides a gateway to new customers to eventually graduate them to the company's broader forwarding services.
The launch of Twill can also be viewed within a broader initiative by A.P. Moller-Maersk, which said in the fall it is seeking to become more digitally progressive and holistic through its network of container-oriented subsidiaries (namely Maersk Line, APMT and Damco).