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High Digital and Hanse Analytics: Transforming International Trade Insights with Advanced AI

High Digital and Hanse Analytics: Transforming International Trade Insights with Advanced AI

High Digital Ltd achieved a significant milestone when it secured funding from The Sustainable Innovation Fund in 2020, a commendable initiative by Innovate UK, the UK’s very own Innovation Agency. This grant was aimed at elevating the Hanse Analytics application from its initial Minimum Viable Product (MVP) stage, marking a noteworthy step in the world of digital innovation. 

The MVP of the Hanse Analytics software application was designed to deliver international trade insights, drawing data from the extensive UN Comtrade Database. With the newfound funding, High Digital embarked on a journey to enhance the software’s functionality, utility, and scalability, resulting in a more potent and comprehensive Hanse software application. This revamped iteration brought forth detailed international trade analytics, introducing a wealth of monthly goods data from the UN Comtrade Database, a broader spectrum of reporting countries, and an array of fresh analytics reports. 

Originally designed to cater to the unique needs of Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs) engaged in international trade, Hanse Analytics stepped onto the scene during a period of turbulence. The aftermath of Brexit and the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic posed unprecedented challenges to importers and exporters working with the United Kingdom. In response, Hanse Analytics emerged as a reliable source of data, offering valuable insights to guide strategic decision-making.             

Dr Ousmène Mandeng, the visionary Founder of East-West International Trade Analytics Ltd, aptly notes, “Covid-19 and Brexit have significantly complicated international trade relations and demand innovative tools to help SMEs navigate this new environment successfully.”  

Taking a step further, High Digital introduced a groundbreaking addition to the Hanse Analytics application: an array of AI-powered features. These innovative AI functionalities empower users to delve deeper into the data, extracting hidden trends, patterns, and opportunities that may elude manual analysis.  

Oliver Mackereth, the driving force behind High Digital Ltd, explains, “AI features from the Microsoft suite enable us to swiftly integrate AI-powered capabilities into the Hanse Analytics application, equipping users with incredible capabilities to query extensive datasets.”  

These AI attributes encompass natural language processing that facilitates Q&A functionality, as well as intelligent data analysis to identify key influencers and anomalies, offering insightful suggestions. Importers and exporters can harness these capabilities when delving into the data to explore alternative markets or suppliers.  

Unexpectedly, Hanse Analytics garnered attention not only from businesses but also from academics, researchers, and journalists who sought to uncover hidden gems within import-export data. A striking example can be found in the context of the conflict in Ukraine, which led to a substantial decline in exports to Russia following the invasion of Ukraine in February 2022. There were allegations that Russia sought to source critical components, including semiconductors, from common household electronic items such as washing machines and laptops for its military machinery. Remarkably, while exports to Russia in these products plummeted, they surged in countries considered friendly to Russia.  

The unusual increase in exports of washing machines and computers to countries like Armenia, Georgia, and Kazakhstan raised eyebrows and hinted at Russia’s search for alternative supply routes for sanctioned hardware. Through anomaly detection and quick insights, it was revealed that exports of washing machines from Germany to Kazakhstan had tripled since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine up to April 2023, compared to the average level as measured in net weight of shipped products (the value of shipped products had not been reported since December 2021). Equally intriguing, exports of washing machines from Italy to Georgia had soared tenfold during the same period. Extracting such critical insights without the aid of AI would require an in-depth understanding and a significant amount of time.  

As AI technology continues to advance, the Hanse Analytics team remains committed to expanding the application’s functionality. The goal is to deliver vital insights directly to users, customised to their specific sectors and countries. Furthermore, the team is exploring the possibilities of integrating Comtrade data from Hanse Analytics with other data sources, such as climate and migration data, to provide a more profound and comprehensive analysis. The future of international trade insights promises to be exciting and dynamic, so stay tuned for what is to come.

Editor-in-Chief since 2011.

Global Banking & Finance Review


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