Dry bulk snapshot: Wayfinder generates >4.5% average fuel savings across two key iron ore routes (BDI C5 and C14) in Q1 2024

Sofar Ocean

Sofar Ocean’s Wayfinder platform uses the most accurate marine weather forecasts and custom calibrated vessel performance models to provide optimized guidance that saves ships time, fuel, and emissions. Wayfinder’s forecasts integrate the real-time observations made by Sofar’s Spotter sensor network, and are up to 50% more accurate than the traditional models used by other weather routing providers.

Superior forecasts unlock superior route guidance. In Q1 2024, a sampling of Capesize vessels following Wayfinder’s daily RPM and waypoint recommendations saved an average of $28,390 per voyage. Across 40+ ballast and laden legs between Australia-China (Baltic Dry Index C5) and Brazil-China (Baltic Dry Index C14) — two major iron ore routes — the dry bulk carriers reduced average fuel consumption by 4.6% and average emissions output by 102 MT of CO2 per voyage.

A global map colored by wave height in the ocean that shows a blue route between Australia and China and an orange route between Brazil and China. In a panel on the right side of the image, key savings statistics are shown.
A snapshot of savings generated by Capesize vessels following Wayfinder’s voyage guidance on two key iron ore routes in Q1 2024.

These strong savings punctuated an already bullish quarter for Capes. Per BIMCO, global iron ore shipments rose 3.8% year-over-year (y/y) in Q1, with shipments from Brazil, in particular, exceeding expectations. The “higher volume and the above average sailing distances between Brazil and China,” boosted the Baltic Exchange’s Capesize 5TC index, which rose to an average of $24,286 per day (+165.6% y/y). 

A reversal of fortunes, however, may be looming. Steel production in China, which receives nearly three quarters of global seaborne iron ore shipments, is lagging. If iron ore supply continues to outpace demand, as projected, spot prices will surely weaken. During these down periods, the consistent savings generated by Wayfinder help improve margins and are particularly valuable to dry bulk carriers.

Contact the Wayfinder sales team to learn more about our platform or schedule a demo.

Source: "Iron ore shipments up 3.8% despite weak Chinese demand" (BIMCO)

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