FAQ around Cargodian Trade

Here you will find almost all questions answered about Cargodian Trade and the processes around it. Should you not find an answer, please do not hesitate to write to us. We are happy to be there for you.

Quick Links

Cargodian Information on Next Steps

You can save your entries at any time. Your entries are automatically saved when clicking on “next”. Once you saved your record on a Trade, you may commit it, or send it to your designated Trading Partner for completion.

Once you clicked on “Commit Trade”, your offer is binding and now it is up to the designated Trading Partners, Cargodian and the Customer or Supplier to commit, too. This is just a click away. If you and your Trading Partner have both committed, and Cargodian not yet, then Cargodian will review the binding Trade proposal, for example for compliance checks on Sanctions, Anti Money Laundering Regulations, Embargos or other related aspects.

If you don’t hear from Cargodian, all is good, and the Trade is commencing. Next step will be shipping information and/or or B/L submission.

Cargodian will check the B/L if it meets the conditions agreed in our Trade Contract. In case Cargodian has questions, Cargodian will reach out to you. If not, the Trade commences.

Cargodian facilitates your mercantile Trade with a step-by-step action plan. Subject to the fulfilling of certain conditions, payments are requested, or payments are made. If you have received a payment request this means that one step was accomplished, and now it’s your turn to keep the Trade going: please proceed the requested payment.

Great, the goods you bought are coming close! The delivery notification contains details to proceedings how you can obtain the goods and whom you may contact to organize import administration, import duties, tax payments, and delivery to the final destination of the traded goods.

Cargodian issues an Order Confirmation Form, once both you and the Trading Partner have committed to one mercantile Trade. The details are specified in the Order Confirmation form.

Invoices need to be paid to Cargodian. Credit notes issued by Cargodian will be paid to the beneficiary. Check your bank details on the credit note, to not miss out on the payment.

Cargodian will issue a Trade Acceptance Notification, once Cargodian committed to one mercantile Trade. The details are specified in the Order Confirmation form.

Sometimes a mercantile Trade doesn’t go through, sadly. This could happen because either Trade Partner or Cargodian have rejected a Trade online. In this case Cargodian will send you a notification with details.

There was a change in the Trade Data, which requires your review and acceptance/commitment. Please log in, check out the relevant Trade.

Trade and payments take place step-by-step. Once you receive a Trade Status Change notification it means the Status of this one individual Trade has changed and Cargodian informs you about the change. If we need you to do something, it would be mentioned in this notification.

Great! You have received an offer to enter into a mercantile Trade. Please, check out all the details and commercial conditions. If all good, then click “commit”. If not, please update the Trade Details and your designated Trade Partners will be notified.

Cargodian facilitates your Trade with a step-by-step action plan. Subject to the fulfilling of certain conditions, payments are requested, or payments are made. If you have received a payment information notification, it means that one step was accomplished, and now it’s Cargodians’ turn to pay the agreed amount to you.

Cargodian facilitates your Trade with a step-by-step action plan. Subject to the fulfilling of certain conditions, payments are requested, or payments are made. If you have received a payment request reminder, it means that a required payment is overdue, and now it’s your turn to keep the Trade going: please pay now, without further delay.

Sometimes a mercantile Trade doesn’t go through, sadly. This could happen because either Trade Partner or Cargodian have cancelled a Trade. In this case Cargodian will send you a notification with details.

You receive a Trade Document Upload Notification, once a new document has been uploaded. Please check the new document.

Trade and payments take place step-by-step. Once you receive a Trade Information update/completion Request it means the Status of this one individual Trade has changed and Cargodian informs you about the change, and potentially required actions to be taken.

Yay! You successfully  registered yourself with Cargodian. Now you can start logging in your first mercantile Trade. Give it a try, its easy. Or check out our Demo here.

The Email address in your user account has been changed. You didn’t initiate this change of contact email address data? Please notify Cargodian immediately by phone or email.

The password related to your user account has been changed. You didn’t initiate this change? Please notify Cargodian immediately by phone or email.

You invited another user to be registered with Cargodian to represent your company. This user has accomplished its registration and is now registered. Now, you both can log and administer mercantile Trades on Cargodian.

Sometimes a mercantile Trade is disrupted. This could have various reasons. Once you receive a Trade Disruption Notification, Cargodian will explain the disruption in the message. In case of questions please contact Cargodian by phone or email.

Cargodian will check if the B/L meets the conditions agreed in our Trade Contract. In case Cargodian has questions, Cargodian will reach out to you. If not, the Trade commences.

The mercantile Trade reached another stage: the goods are for your disposal. You may now contact the Transport, Forwarding or Logistics company to arrange the next steps: onward transport, Customs clearance or more.

Cargodian did check, if the B/L meets the conditions agreed in our Trade Contract. The B/L you have submitted does not meet the agreed conditions and hence Cargodian will reject it. Please, contact your Transport Service Provider to issue a B/L document which is in line with the agreed Trade conditions. Otherwise Cargodian will cannot proceed with the Trade. Please contact Cargodian by mail or phone if you have questions.

The mercantile Trade reached another stage: the goods are for your disposal. You may now contact the Transport, Forwarding or Logistics company to arrange the next steps: onward transport, Customs clearance or more.

Document the differences/damages and notify your Transport Insurance, the Supplier and Cargodian immediately. Cargodian might need to organize further inspection, please keep the mercantile goods available. Our team will be in touch shortly after Cargodian received your notification via phone or email or on the Cargodian Platform.

Shipping usually goes by schedule, but sometimes due to weather or other circumstances there might be a delay.

The shipping and transport conditions are documented in the Incoterms and form part of the contractual agreement for your mercantile trade. Any change needs to be agreed by and with the involved Trade Partners. Let Cargodian know what the change is and why, and Cargodian will take it from there. Please contact Cargodian by email, phone or on the Cargodian Platform.

Dual-Use-Goods are products and technologies normally used for civilian purposes, but which may have military applications, too. Cargodian is subject to the laws of the European Union, hence Cargodian must comply with the European Union Dual Use Regulation. In our notification Cargodian will explain the next step and further proceedings, which determine if Cargodian is able to enter into the mercantile Trade.
Cargodian FAQ

When you enter into a mercantile Trade contract with Cargodian, both you and Cargodian agree certain terms and conditions, for example an Incoterm and a certain transport mode. The B/L helps to document such agreed conditions, and it also functions as title of ownership for the goods. Learn more here.

When you enter into a mercantile Trade contract with Cargodian, both you and Cargodian agree certain terms and conditions, for example an Incoterm and a certain transport mode. The B/L helps to document such agreed conditions, and it also functions as title of ownership for the goods. Without sending the Original B/L to Cargodian, the step-by-step Trade agreement is interrupted. Learn more here.

We are fully digital at Cargodian. Let’s safe paper and work with digital invoices. Appreciate if you upload your invoice or payment request on Cargodian Trade. 

You and Cargodian have agreed a step-by-step payment, subject to fulfilling certain actions. If the next milestone is reached, Cargodian will pay the agreed percentage of the Trade amount to the Bank Account you have indicated for your company. Should you feel a payment is overdue, please contact Cargodian by email or phone. Thank you.

Please click HERE and Cargodian will help you from there. If this doesn’t work for you, please contact Cargodian via Email or Phone. Thank you.

Cargodian will protect your data, and sometimes data cannot be changed easily. Please click here to see which data you can change. For other changes, please contact Cargodian via Email or Phone. Thank you.

Please login to the Cargodian Platform and select “Cancel”. Stopping a Trade which is on the way could be complex, let’s talk to understand what you want to do and why, and how we can assist with your request. Please contact Cargodian by Email or Phone. Thank you.

Please login to the Cargodian Platform and select “change/update Trade”. If this option isn’t available, please contact Cargodian by Email or Phone. Thank you.

Cargodian doesn’t offer Transport Insurance. Both Trading Partners need to cover Transport Insurance as per the contractually agreed conditions and Incoterms. Otherwise, you might risk of being exposed to transport related risks. Need help? Please contact Cargodian by email or phone.

As you represent a company, which is registered in a certain jurisdiction, you need to ensure all compliance, regulatory or other law which is applicable for you. Cargodian is subject to the laws of Germany and the European Union, hence Cargodian abides German and EU law.

Cargodian is offering a digital mercantile Trade platform. All Trades are documented in an immutable ledger, applying Blockchain Distributed Ledger Technology: Hyperledger Fabric. Using Cargodian means knowing what’s next: all steps are explained, and you know what’s coming. Cargodian helps you and your global trading partners to trade fast, affordable and direct.

Currently Cargodian is available for Business to Business, B2B only. As individual and private person, you cannot enjoy our services (yet). Sign up for our Newsletter, Cargodian will update you once this is available!

Please contact Cargodian by phone or Email. Cargodian is locally represented in a number of countries or regions in which Cargodian  offers the Cargodian mercantile Trade platform.

Cargodian offers a new way of easy and affordable step-by-step payment for mercantile Trade. Our service requires that Cargodian is becoming your trading partner. So Cargodian is between the Supplier/Seller and the Customer/Buyer as respective Seller or Buyer. Easy, right? Please contact Cargodian by phone or Email if you want to know more. Thank you.

Please contact Cargodian by phone or Email. Cargodian is locally represented in a number of countries or regions in which Cargodian offers the Cargodian mercantile Trade platform.

Cargodian facilitates your mercantile Trade with a step-by-step action plan. Subject to the fulfilling of certain conditions, payments are requested, or payments are made. If you have received a payment request means that one step was accomplished, and now it’s your turn to keep the Trade going: please proceed the requested payment.

Mercantile Trade knows many different currencies. You can choose your home currency, EUR or USD as currency for mercantile Trades on the Cargodian Platform. After the trade process has started, changing the chosen currency during an ongoing trade is not possible.

Once you have paid in full and Cargodian has released the B/L to the Transport Company, you are in charge and decide where you want the goods to go. Bear in mind: you have contractually agreed to a certain country of destination and, in case of dual use, to a certain usage of the goods. Cargodian has confirmed and filed this data with authorities. If you deviate from this information, you might need to apply for a new permit or submit notification to the respective authorities. Please consult what is applicable for you.

Once you have paid in full and Cargodian has released the B/L to the Transport Company, you are in charge and decide where you want the goods to go. Bear in mind: you have contractually agreed to a certain country of destination and, in case of dual use, to a certain usage of the goods. Cargodian has confirmed and filed this data with authorities. If you deviate from this information, you might need to apply for a new permit or submit notification to the respective authorities. Please consult what is applicable for you.
If your company entity wasn’t available in the search screen results and you registered your company, we will verify the company details with external service providers such, for example, Dun & Bradstreet. Once this is accomplished you will be notified via Email.

Yay! Then we successfully validated your business entity, and you are good to go. Start your first Mercantile Trade right here.

One user account can be active for several companies (just imagine you work for a holding company and administer business for several subsidiaries in your group). You can link those to your user account. We might require additional information from you in this case, to make sure you are authorized to act on behalf of those entities.

Once all involved Trading Partners have committed to a Trade, changes require new commitment from all parties involved. This is possible prior to shipment of the goods.

Great! Thanks for committing a Trade. Now Cargodian has notified the Trading Partner, and we wait for their commitment. If both Trading Partners have committed, then its Cargodians’ turn: we will carry out a number of Trade Compliance and KYB Compliance related checks. Once this is done, Cargodian will commit to the Trade, too. You can monitor the status of each Trade in your Trading screen on the Cargodian Platform. And we will send you an email with status change notifications.

Click on the link in the Email, it will take you directly to the Cargodian Platform to commence on there. Link doesn’t work? Please contact Cargodian by phone or Email. Thank you.

General questions

Cargodian Trade is a secure digital mercantile Trade platform on which a Buyer or Seller can enter their mercantile Trade. Once Cargodian accepts the Trade, Cargodian will join this mercantile Trade as a cross-trader and will act as Guardian of the Cargo and of the event-based payments between Buyer and Seller.

A letter of credit, also known as a documentary credit or bankers’ commercial credit, or letter of undertaking, is a payment mechanism used in international trade to provide an economic guarantee from a creditworthy bank to an exporter of goods (Wikipedia).

Cargodian is not a bank or a payment institution. Cargodian Trade is the modern, innovative digital alternative to a L/C, where Cargodian steps as a Cross-Trader into the mercantile Trade and combines an event-based payment with ownership of the traded Goods. By doing this, Cargodian facilitates the conventional payment mechanism and make it faster and easier.

Currently Cargodian is available for Business to Business (B2B) in all countries of the EU and Malaysia only. We are gradually expanding globally! Sign up for our Newsletter, Cargodian will update you once more countries are available!

Currently Cargodian is available for Business to Business (B2B) only. As individual and private person, you cannot enjoy our services (yet). Sign up for our Newsletter, Cargodian will update you once this is available!

Please contact Cargodian by phone or Email if you want to know more. Thank you.

Currently Cargodian is available in all countries of the EU and Malaysia only. We are gradually expanding globally! Sign up for our Newsletter, Cargodian will update you once more countries are available!

Cargodian is offering a digital mercantile Trade platform. All Trades are documented in an immutable ledger, applying Blockchain Distributed Ledger Technology: Hyperledger Fabric. This modern technology offers a high security for you as a customer. Using Cargodian means knowing what’s next: all steps are explained, and you know what’s coming. Cargodian helps you and your global trading partners to trade fast, affordable and direct. Everything is fully transparent, for example Cargodians Trade Margin. Which is a fixed price, by the way, it will not change later (or increase for each email or phone call, which is often the case with conventional L/Cs).

No, we don’t. So far, you can only use Cargodian Trade once you found and agreed with your Business Partner on a mercantile Trade. Sign up for our Newsletter, Cargodian will update you once more features are available!

No, we don’t. So far, you can only use Cargodian Trade once you found and agreed with your Business Partner on a mercantile Trade. Sign up for our Newsletter, Cargodian will update you once more features are available! 

Cargodian offers a new way of easy and affordable mercantile Trade. Our service requires that Cargodian is becoming your trading partner. So Cargodian is between the Supplier/Seller and the Customer/Buyer as respective Seller or Buyer. Easy, right? Please contact Cargodian by phone or Email if you want to know more.

Sure, bring them on! As long as you have the goods to sell or the money to buy, we are good to go.

Cargodian is requiring a B/L for the shipment of the mercantile goods, in which Cargodian is listed as Consignee or “to order”. Only if Cargodian receives all properly issued original B/Ls we can deliver our part of the deal, to be the Guardian of the Cargo and the event-based payment.

Questions on the process

Click here and register, search and select your company, and “create a trade”. It’s easy. Getting stuck or having questions? Please give us a call or send us an email.

If your company entity wasn’t available in the search screen results and you registered your company manual, we will verify the company details with external service providers. Once this is accomplished you will be notified via Email. However, you can create a Trade already and get everything prepared.

One of you two, either the Buyer or the Seller/Supplier has to take the first step. Once you “created a new Trade” on Cargodian Trade, you can invite your Business Partner to join you in this trade. It’s easy and fast, try it!

When you “create a Trade” on Cargodian Trade, we will ask you to enter the Name, email address and phone number of your business partner. With that, they will receive an E-Mail invite to participate in the Trade you propose.

Of course! If details of the mercantile Trade between you, your trading partner and Cargodian change, just let us know on Cargodian Trade and follow the steps as described on the Website.

Please login to the Cargodian Platform and select “Cancel”. Stopping a Trade which is on the way could be complex, let’s talk to understand what you want to do and why, and how we can assist with your request. Please contact Cargodian by Email or Phone, so that we can try to find a solution.

Once all involved Trading Partners have committed to a Trade, changes require new commitment from all parties involved. This is possible prior to shipment of the goods.

If details of the mercantile Trade between you, your trading partner and Cargodian change, just let us know on Cargodian Trade and follow the steps as described on the Website. Changes do not cost you money, the price remains unchanged (unless the trade amount changes, then also the Cargodian Trade Margin will be recalculated). But we do not charge a fee for changes, phone calls, or emails.

Click on the link in the Email, it will take you directly to the Cargodian Platform to commence on there. Link doesn’t work? Please contact Cargodian by phone or Email.

When you enter a mercantile Trade on Cargodian Trade, you indicate some dates, e.g. shipping date. All involved parties in the Trade, Buyer, Seller and Cargodian, shall observe the timely execution as indicated. If the schedule changes, inform us on Cargodian Trade, and we take it from there. And of course, there is some legal days defined in the Terms and Conditions of Purchase and the Terms and Conditions of Sale.

Customer account

Please click HERE and Cargodian will help you from there. If this doesn’t work for you, please contact Cargodian via Email or Phone.

Cargodian will protect your data, and sometimes data cannot be changed easily. Please contact Cargodian by phone or email to update your company details.

Please login to the Cargodian Platform and select “change/update Trade”. If this option isn’t available, please contact Cargodian by Email or Phone.

One user account can be active for several companies (just imagine you work for a holding company and administer business for several subsidiaries in your group). You can link those to your user account. We might require additional information from you in this case, to make sure you are authorized to act on behalf of those entities.

Invoice & Payment

Cargodian Trade asks a Margin which consists of two amounts: the fix fee for each Trade, plus a percentage, which is calculated on the total amount of one mercantile Trade. The Margin will be shown when you “create a new Trade”. Here you have the choice: paid in full by the Buyer, paid in full by the Seller, or 50%/50% shared between Buyer and Seller.

No, there are no hidden costs. The Cargodian Trade Margin is fixed. It only changes, if the total Trade amount changes (as one part of the Trade Margin is a percentage, which is calculated on the total amount of the mercantile Trade). Additional costs or damage might only incur if one is not fulfilling the agreements made.

Cargodian Trade enables safe and secure mercantile Trading. The payment is event based, and depends on the mode of transport. For example, if you choose Sea Transport (Marine Container), then there is two event-based payments in the Ratio 60/40. For each Trading Partner, for Buyer and Seller, there is different points in time when a payment is due/is made.  

Cargodian is not a Bank nor a financial institution. We do not offer such products or services comparable to a Bank. What we offer is the Digital Alternative to an L/C, but our Product is not an L/C. Cargodian is offering a mercantile Trade Platform and steps into the mercantile Trade as Buyer/Seller to enable the role as Guardian of the Cargo, and the event-based payment.

Cargodian is not a Bank nor a financial institution. We do not offer such products or services comparable to a Bank. What we offer is the Digital Alternative to an L/C, but our Product is not an L/C. Cargodian is offering a mercantile Trade Platform and steps into the mercantile Trade as Buyer/Seller to enable the role as Guardian of the Cargo, and the event-based payment.

Please contact Cargodian by phone or Email if you want to know more. Thank you.

We are fully digital at Cargodian. Let’s safe paper and work with digital invoices. Appreciate if you upload your invoice on Cargodian Trade.

For Sea Transport, the shipping company will issue a B/L (Bill of Lading). This document is issued with Cargodian as Consignee, or to-order. In both cases it enables Cargodian to control the release of the shipped goods in the country of destination, to ensure the Buyer receives the goods only then, when the remaining payment (subject to the agreed event-based payment steps) is made from the Buyer to Cargodian. Since we do not have this security with other transport methods, a full advanced payment is necessary.

Not at the moment. At a later stage we will offer this. Stay tuned and sign up for our Newsletter!

Sure! Let us know if you need any information for your Bank or Financial Institution on Cargodian Trade.

Cargodian facilitates your mercantile Trade with a step-by-step event-based payment. Subject to the fulfilling of certain conditions, payments are requested, or payments are made. If you have received a payment request means that one step was accomplished, and now it’s your turn to keep the Trade going: please proceed the requested payment.

You and Cargodian have agreed a step-by-step event-based payment, subject to fulfilling certain actions. If the next milestone is reached, Cargodian will pay the agreed percentage of the Trade amount to the Bank Account you have indicated for your company. Should you feel a payment is overdue, please contact Cargodian by email or phone.

If the change related to the quantity and quality of the mercantile goods, or the shipping date, please update your Trade on Cargodian Trade.

Sure! Cargodian doesn’t offer those at the moment, so we are no big help if you seek Credit Line or Financing.

Currency & Rates

Cargodian Trade is available in EUR, USD, your home country currency, and your Trading parts country currency (if those are exchangeable without restrictions). Create a New Trade to see which currencies you could use.

Cargodian Trade is available in EUR, USD, your home country currency, and your Trading parts country currency (if those are exchangeable without restrictions). After the trade process has started, changing the chosen currency during an ongoing trade is not possible at this stage. Stay tuned and sign up for our Newsletter!

We do not offer Currency Exchange. Cargodian Trade offers the option to choose different payment currencies for both the Buyer and the Seller. So, you decide in which currency you want to Trade, to pay or to be paid. We apply our own algorithm to determine the amount of the Trade Payment in the chosen currency at the estimated point in time.

When you create a New Trade, Cargodian Trade will show you the amount in the currency you have chosen. This amount is fixed for the given date estimation. Only if shipping is delayed more than 2 weeks, then we will re-calculate and offer you an updated Trade amount in the chosen currency.

As we do not offer currency exchange, there is no exchange rate. But we do determine the Payment amount for our joint mercantile Trade at one (or several) points in time for the chosen currencies. So, it depends which currency you have chosen for your trade.

Please contact Cargodian by phone or Email if you want to know more. Thank you.

Insurance & Documentation

Cargodian does not provide transport insurance for your trade. Please, you and your Trading Partner have to ensure full transport insurance for your mercantile trade.

Cargodian does not provide transport insurance for your trade. Please, you and your Trading Partner have to ensure full transport insurance for your mercantile trade.

For Cargodian, there is two documents needed: the seller’s invoice to Cargodian, and the B/L (Bill of Lading) which is issued by the shipping company. Subject to specific goods and Export and Import Country Regulation, there might be additional documents required in each country by the Trading Partners. This is beyond what Cargodian requires from you, as long as you fullfill all requirements in the exporting and importing country and any other arrangements you have agreed between you and your Trading Partner.

Cargodian does carry out forensic review of documents as part of our ongoing fraud-detection processes.

Shipment & Export/Import

Click HERE to learn more about the Bill of Lading (B/L).

When you enter into a mercantile Trade contract with Cargodian, both you and Cargodian agree certain terms and conditions, for example an Incoterm and a certain transport mode. The B/L helps to document such agreed conditions, and it also functions as title of ownership for the goods. Learn more here.

When you enter into a mercantile Trade contract with Cargodian, both you and Cargodian agree certain terms and conditions, for example an Incoterm and a certain transport mode. The B/L helps to document such agreed conditions, and it also functions as title of ownership for the goods. Without sending the Original B/L to Cargodian, the step-by-step Trade agreement is interrupted. Learn more here.

Cargodian Trade helps to guard the Cargo and the agreed event-based step-by-step payment. Cargodian is neither Importer nor Exporter, nor does Cargodian facilitate or provide any clearing, import or export services.

Once you have paid in full and Cargodian has released the B/L to the Transport Company, you are in charge and decide where you want the goods to go. Bear in mind: you have contractually agreed to a certain country of destination and, in case of dual use, to a certain usage of the goods. Cargodian has confirmed and filed this data with authorities. If you deviate from this information, you might need to apply for a new permit or submit notification to the respective authorities. Please consult what is applicable for you.

Please contact Cargodian by phone or Email if you want to know more. Thank you.

Once you have paid in full and Cargodian has released the B/L to the Transport Company, you are in charge and decide where you want the goods to go. Bear in mind: you have contractually agreed to a certain country of destination and, in case of dual use, to a certain usage of the goods. Cargodian has confirmed and filed this data with authorities. If you deviate from this information, you might need to apply for a new permit or submit notification to the respective authorities. Please consult what is applicable for you.

Please contact Cargodian by phone or Email if you want to know more. Thank you.

Compliance & Risk-Management

Cargodian applies state-of-the-art Security Protocols and ensures GDPR compliance, so that your entered data is protected. 

Cargodian does not evaluate the credit-worthiness and financial information of the Trading Partners.  

Cargodian executes a KYB check for all involved entities, which includes a review of their UBO (Ultimate Beneficial Owner). Also, Cargodian applies required checks on Sanctions, Embargos and other Trade Limitations. Cargodian is subject to the laws of Germany and the European Union, hence Cargodian abides German and EU law.

As you represent a company, which is registered in a certain jurisdiction, you need to ensure all compliance, regulatory or other law which is applicable for you. Cargodian is subject to the laws of Germany and the European Union, hence Cargodian abides German and EU law.

Cargodian facilitates the mercantile Trade, becomes the Guardian of the Cargo and the event-based step-by-step payment. There is 60-100% down-payment prior to shipment. For the remaining risk (e.g. a defaulting buyer) towards Cargodian and the Seller, this can be mitigated by selling the mercantile goods to other than the initial (defaulting) buyer. Cargodian will coordinate such disposal process in close cooperation with the Seller.

Contact & Claims

If a shipment is lost or damaged in transport, please notify immediately the transport insurance (which either you or your Trading Partner have organized to cover such risk), your Trading Partner and Cargodian.

If a shipment is lost or damaged in transport, please notify immediately the transport insurance (which either you or your Trading Partner have organized to cover such risk), your Trading Partner and Cargodian.

If the mercantile goods do not meet your expectation or order specification, please notify your Trading Partner and Cargodian immediately. Cargodian will hold back the remaining payment, until this finding has been resolved between you and your Trading Partner.

Please contact Cargodian by phone or Email. Cargodian is locally represented in a number of countries or regions in which Cargodian offers the Cargodian mercantile Trade platform.

Please contact Cargodian by phone or Email. Cargodian is locally represented in a number of countries or regions in which Cargodian offers the Cargodian mercantile Trade platform.

Bill of Lading

Bill of lading (BoL or B/L) is one of the main documents used to execute transportation transactions by sea, air or road. Also, it serves as the main document which is needed to use the services of Cargodian GmbH.
Tip: Whenever embarking in shipping activity, be sure to engage an experienced forwarder to ensure all documentation and the flow of B/Ls are handled correctly.

What Is a Bill of Lading (B/L)?

A bill of lading (or short B/L) is a document issued by a carrier (the company who transports and delivers goods) to a shipper (someone who supplies and/or owns the goods – also known as a consignor), confirming goods were received in an acceptable condition and are ready to be shipped. Those goods will then be delivered by the carrier to a consignee (the person who bought the goods in the first place). A B/L essentially is a contract of carriage between the shipper, consignee, and carrier stating the terms and conditions of carriage.

What Is a Bill of Lading (B/L) Used for?

A bill of lading can represent a receipt of goods.

Shipments cannot be executed without a bill of Lading. B/Ls must be issued for goods to travel from point A to point B. They are legally binding documents, and they often serve as proof of ownership over the goods being carried.

A bill of landing also covers its role as title to goods.

Once the goods have arrived at destination, the bill of lading acts as a title to the goods. The consignee* listed will need to present the bill of lading to secure the release of the shipment by the carrier and claim ownership. In this sense, it is evidence of confirmation of delivery.

*Only the consignee listed on the bill of lading has contractual rights to request for the release of the cargo.

Bills of Lading also make sure that the shipper is paid.

In some cases, the shipper can hold the original bill until they receive payment. By doing this, the consignee is unable to access their goods until payment has been made and the bill of lading released.

Who Uses a Bill of Lading?

Usually, companies that sell transportation services generate the bill of lading. They can include owner-drivers, freight forwarders, shipping lines, third party logistics companies and others. They include companies transporting goods by any means, whether it be through air, sea, rail, or road. They can be used for both domestic and international deliveries.

What Information Is Contained on a Bill of Lading?

Accuracy Is Critical

The importance of providing accurate information on a bill of lading! Mistakes in preparing bills of lading have led to disasters for transportation companies. For example, in 2017, a freight forwarder was ordered by a court in Australia to pay over AUD 800,000 in damages for ‘misleading and deceptive conduct’ because the bills of lading gave the impression that they were ocean carriers bills (when they were not). Extreme caution must be taken when generating these bills.

Who Issues a Bill of Lading?

The ‘carrier’ is the only company that can issue the bill of lading. When transporting by sea freight, the carrier can refer to the Shipping Line (Vessel Operating Common Carrier) or an NVOCC (Non Vessel Operating Common Carrier) also known as a Freight Forwarder (although not all Freight Forwarders are NVOCC’s).

Who Receives a Bill of Lading?

bills of lading are normally provided to:

If the goods are being exported, this bill of lading journey is as follows:

Different types of Bills of Lading

There are, many different types of bills of lading. They differ based on many factors such as the issuer of the B/L, the purpose of the B/L, its form of transmission, the relationship between buyer and seller, and the protection it offers to the buyer.

The main types of bill of lading dealt with for international transport are Ocean Bill of Lading, Seaway Bill of Lading, House Bill of Lading, Master Air Way Bill of Lading, House Air Way Bill of Lading and occasionally Switch Bill of Lading. We will cover each one of them below. But first, there are two main categories that bills of ladings fall in that you need to know: negotiable and non-negotiable. Cargodian GmbH always requires a negotiable B/L.

Negotiable And Non-negotiable B/L

An original bill of lading is a negotiable and legal document as it represents the title of the goods. Non-negotiable bills are in effect copies of the originals but have no power over the title of the goods.

Original bills of lading (negotiable) must be endorsed by the consignee (buyer) when being transferred to a third party such as a freight forwarder and much like a cheque that is made out to a specific party.

When cargo moves under a negotiable status, it is the forwarder’s responsibility to ensure it is surrendered to the appropriate authority to obtain possession. When cargo moves through the forwarder’s NVOCC services (Non Vessel Owning Common Carrier) on Negotiable Bills, the forwarder too must ensure that the original bill (negotiable) is surrendered to them prior to releasing the consignee or their agent.

Failure to follow this process would hold the carrier responsible for the value of the cargo if the contract between the shipper/consignee is not honoured.

Note that both terms only apply to sea freight. For airfreight, terms are Master Air Way Bill (M/AWB) and House Air Way Bill (H/AWB). However, unlike sea freight, Air Way Bills are classed as non-negotiable documents unless they are consigned through a bank.

B/L Types

Ocean Bill of Lading

This is generated by the shipping lines as the Carrier in this instance for containers transiting by sea and is generally used when the shipper would like to retain control of payment by a consignee (buyer) for the goods. The original bill of lading will be utilized to make sure payment is made before the goods are released to the consignee.

Once payment is receipted the document can be actioned in several ways, dependent on what the carrier makes available. Original bill of lading can be surrendered to the carrier for a Telex Release (a digital version of the B/L). Original bill of lading is usually couriered to the consignee to present to the reciprocating carrier at the destination to obtain release.

Seaway Bill of Lading

It is a non-negotiable document issued instead of an Ocean Bill of Lading where the Shipper has no need to control the release of cargo.

House Bill of Lading (HB/L)

Where cargo is arranged by sea freight through an NVOCC/Freight Forwarder a House Bill of Lading is generated. This can be arranged as a negotiable or non-negotiable option depending on the requirements of the shipper. Where a non-negotiable option can be utilised, it can sometimes be arranged/referred to as an Express Bill of Lading.

Master Air Way Bill of Lading

Master Air Way Bills (MAWB’s) are Airline bills of Lading and are generated by the airline or freight forwarders. They are non-negotiable documents excepting where the cargo is consigned ‘to order’. This generally means that the shipment has been negotiated through a bank in which case a release from the bank in question would need to be presented prior to the cargo being released by the carrier. Generally, these are arranged from forwarder to forwarder and a House Air Way Bill is generated from the shipper to the consignee.

House Air Way Bill of Lading

This is the Air Way Bill that is issued by a freight forwarder for consolidated air freight shipments. HAWB’s are treated exactly the same as MAWB’s, provided they indicate the issuer itself assumes the liability as the carrier or is acting as the agent of a named carrier.

Multimodal Bill of Lading

These are when you’re using more than one type of transport. For instance, you may use rail for the some of the trip and then road for the rest.

Through Bill of Lading

Through bills of lading are for goods transported by ocean as much as it can possibly be transported by ocean, and then by road or rail to the destination. Ensure these are not mixed up with multimodal bills of lading.

Switch Bill of Lading

When goods need to be moved and the supplier’s information needs to be kept private – generally in the case of a triangle shipment where a buyer is on-selling to a 3rd party, a second B/L is generated replacing the first with the updated information.

Dirty/Claused Bill of Lading

This term is used when the goods are received by the shipper in a damaged condition. In these cases, the carrier’s insurance company may refuse a claim for damage. Contrast this with a ‘clean’ bill of lading, where the goods are delivered in an acceptable condition.

Straight Bill of Lading

This is a type of format of either an Ocean or House Bill of Lading and are used when the goods are paid in full and delivered direct to the consignee (i.e., the person or organisation that purchased the goods in the first place).

Cargo is only released to the named consignee at the declared destination, and it only happens upon surrender of at least 1 of the original copies issued.

Electronic Bills of Lading – Telex Release and Express Release​

Telex release and Express release are not variations of bills of lading, but methods of releasing a bill of lading.

A Telex Release is simply an EDI message or email which is sent by the carrier or agent at load port to their office or agent at discharge port informing that the shipper has surrendered one or all the original bills of lading that have been issued to them. Based on this, the discharge port agent can release cargo to the named consignee shown on the bill of lading without presentation of any original bills of lading.

The Express Release Bill is similar to the Telex Release in the sense that it can be digital. However, the difference being that with the Express Release, no hard copies of the bill of lading are issued. With no originals are created, the Express Release offers many advantages, but should only be used under very specific circumstances.

Why are Incoterms Important to a Bill of Lading?

Your choice of incoterms will determine how the whole process will be handled. Before reading on, check out our more details on Incoterms to understand how the two interact. Which incoterms to use can be tricky, as it will depend on the nature of the business and what goods are being handled. You must determine exactly what terms you are shipping on so there is clarity who is responsible for what part of the shipping process.

The Incoterm which you communicate to the freight forwarder or transportation company must be identical to the contractually agreed Incoterm between the parties involved in one mercantile trade which is transactioned via Cargodian.

What Is Important for Issuing B/L when Trading on Cargodian?

1. Negotiable Bill of Lading

To be able to successfully commence a trade on Cargodian, a negotiable (original) B/L needs to be issued. A B/L essentially is a contract of carriage between the shipper, consignee, and carrier stating the terms and conditions of carriage. Without B/L, you only can use Cargodian in 100% payment mode, not in the event-based step-by-step payment mode.

2. Correct Incoterm

For creation of the B/L the correct Incoterm must be chosen. Buyer and seller must determine exactly what terms they are shipping on so there is clarity who is responsible for what part of the shipping process. The Incoterm which you communicate to the freight forwarder or transportation company must be identical to the contractually agreed Incoterm between the parties involved in one mercantile trade which is transactioned via Cargodian.

3. Complete Informations

What information needs to be included to the B/L:
  1. Details of the transportation company (i.e., the carrier), the shipper and/or consignee (always Cargodian as the legal “owner” of the goods);
  2. The place where the goods were loaded;
  3. Destination;
  4. Transportation mode (i.e., road, rail, air, sea, etc.);
  5. The terms of the shipment (incoterms);
  6. A description of the goods being carried (including their weight, dimensions, classification, etc).
If a B/L is not properly filled in and handed out to Cargodian (via mail or at our local office), the trading process cannot start. Upon receipt of the document, it is verified, and the trade commences accordingly.

4. Buyer Becomes Owner

Upon receipt of the final payment by Cargodian, the buyer becomes the owner of the products and the B/L is automatically handed out/released to the buyer, so that the import and collection process can be coordinated.

5. Procedures Must Be Done by Supplier and Buyer

Please note that Cargodian is never the importer or exporter in any trade. Therefore, the import and export procedures must be done by the supplier/seller in their country, and the buyer/customer in the receiving country.

6. Trade Process

Please know the trade process is automatically paused if either the documentation or the payment is not sufficient or on time.

Bill of Lading Process

Import

Consignee (Importer)

Contacts freight forwarder to arrange freight

Freight Forwarder

Contact overseas agent of the origin country

Overseas Agent

Liases with the supplier to ship the goods

Bill of lading is created and is ready to send

Invoices the consignee (buyer)

Receives the Bill of Lading from the overseas agent

Consignee receives documents from supplier

Customs Broker

Does the Australian customs clearance with docs provided by the freight forwarder

Invoices the consignee (buyer)

Goods are already cleared and paid

Final delivery

Bill of Lading Process

Export

Consignor (supplier)

Receives the order from overseas client

Freight Forwarder

Contacts freight forwarder to arrange freight

Consignor (supplier)

Provides documents of the goods 

Freight forwarder

Arranges transport with cartage company and documents with customs broker for export

Cartage company

Goods are sent from origin to port

Deliver to port

Goods are exported

Freight forwarder

Send documents to designated agent

Country of destination agent

Import process starts at destination through local agent