London-based Aprirose Trading has saved significant amounts of time and money since shifting to electronic bills of lading and digitised documentation, using Bolero’s ePresentation to facilitate polymer shipments to East Africa.

“A complete no-brainer that has given us a massive advantage” is how Parag Gudka, director of London-based Aprirose Trading describes the adoption of Bolero’s ePresentation. “Since we started using Bolero’s ePresentation to exchange electronic bills of lading, invoices, certificates of analysis and other documents, Aprirose Trading has eradicated all demurrage charges and removed several days from the process compared with our previous use of paper documents.”

In the past, Aprirose experienced delays with almost every shipment, but now all the risks associated with couriering paper bills of lading from India to the UK have been eliminated.

From the beginning of 2018, Aprirose has conducted more than 70 transactions with ePresentation. This will eventually facilitate 90 per cent of Aprirose’s business.

The previous costs and bottlenecks experienced by Aprirose Trading

The company, which has a turnover of $53 million, trades between 1,500 and 3,000 tonnes of polymers per month with East Africa as the authorised distributor for a large Indian conglomerate. For Aprirose these shipments typically require 45 bills of lading.

Previously, using a courier would add two to three days to the time it took to exchange documents, causing bills of lading to arrive later than the time it takes the cargo to arrive in East Africa, often leading to substantial demurrage costs and indemnity payments.

Using digitised documents on ePresentation, Aprirose is now able to administer all the documentation in advance, using a quarter of the man-hours previously required.

“Whereas two full-time employees would administer the paper documentation, one employee can now achieve more accurate results in half the time” said Parag.

As soon as the cargo is loaded, documents are raised within 24 hours on ePresentation. The digital process allows Aprirose to receive the title documents much quicker. On average, ePresentation saves three to four days per shipment, cutting out demurrage and courier charges and the time-consuming wrangles associated with the loss of bills of lading.

The end of 20 years of frustration with traditional paper processes

Aprirose was encouraged to enrol on Bolero by the Indian exporter 18 months ago, after they themselves started using ePresentation to support major transactions in its worldwide export business.

“The exporter knew about my 20 years of frustration with paper bills of lading and so I did not take a lot of persuading,” said Parag. “Almost every shipment used to get delayed by the documentation, leading to frustration among clients. It was absolutely crucial that we removed the bottlenecks. The way technology is moving we need to move with it and there are massive advantages not only in speed and efficiency gains but also in reducing fraud.”

“Bolero is a simple system to use and implement. All the staff have found it easy and we have had no problems at all.  Since our banks are connected to the Bolero ecosystem, we have considerable reassurance that the solution is secure.”

“It’s the speed of the transaction that makes Bolero the obvious solution. Click, click and it’s done,” says Parag.

“It is a massive advantage and adoption was a no-brainer”.