DBS launches digital solutions package for logistics SMEs

DBS Bank on Wednesday rolled out a digital solutions package for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in the logistics sector, aiming to help them tackle challenges in expanding and keeping up with evolving consumer needs and emerging business trends.

Launched at the Logistics Disrupt by DBS BusinessClass event, the package includes solutions for supply-chain financing and traceability, real-time trade financing applications and funds settlement through the SME's enterprise resource planning or internal systems. Some other features are instant payment collections and refunds via the clients' online portals, mobile apps or DBS MAX.

Singapore's logistics sector contributes about 7 per cent to the country's gross domestic product, and companies in the sector are looking to tap the growth of South-east Asia's e-commerce industry, which is projected to grow to US$100 billion by 2025. However, SMEs in the logistics sector face challenges including lack of access to trade financing solutions, operational inefficiencies from paper-based and manual processes, lack of supply chain traceability, and payment and collection inefficiencies, said DBS.

"Customers looking to expand overseas need more advisory services and solutions and we are here to help them make the first step," said Tan Su Shan, group head of institutional banking at DBS Bank.

"We hope to make banking simpler and more seamless for our customers, so they have a more structured approach to their regionalisation plans."

Added Joyce Tee, group head of DBS Bank's SME banking arm: "The needs of SMEs in the logistics sector are diverse as they have to keep their eye on everything from inventory, timing of goods shipped and received, cash flow and expansion needs. As a responsible banking partner, we want to provide a greater selection of solutions that will help them grow their footprint."

The first SME to sign up for the package was Yang Kee Logistics, a Singapore-based logistics firm that has presence in 12 markets and is looking to grow its regional footprint.

Yang Kee Logistics group CEO Ken Koh said: "Expanding into new markets is always challenging, as we lack market knowledge and understanding of regulatory requirements. Partnering with DBS gives me the confidence to take our regionalisation plans to the next phase."