The space for CTRM and CM software for metals has gotten quite crowded of late, with several vendors adding significant metals capabilities including Enuit, Gen10, Amphora, Fendahl, and others to join existing suppliers like Brady, ION OpenLink, and ION Aspect, for example. However, they all have some pretty serious competition now emerging in the shape of Datamine, part of the Constellation Software company. Datamine has been around since 1981 in the digital mining technology space and has grown into a sizeable entity with over 500 staff located in 20 different countries. It offers end-to-end solutions across the mining and extraction industry from exploration and geological applications through operations and into the supply chain. Recently, it has expanded its offerings in CTRM.
Recently, we were afforded a short demonstration and overview of MineMarket CTRM. MineMarket is a mature system that has evolved over the previous 20 years, most recently into the CTRM space. It is essentially a modular suite of software that, as you might expect given Datamine’s origins, is very extensive and focused on the business’s physical side. It is a Commodity Management solution in terms of our classification with a solid materials management and supply chain management focus. This materials management kernel immediately differentiates it from other solutions in the space that we are aware of. It also includes sales and marketing and supply and demand modules that add a more familiar aspect to the solution.
It provides genuinely detailed and fully integrated functionality for ores, minerals, metals, coal, mineral sands, grain, salt, and sugar, including live PnL, traceability, cost controls, risk management, and comprehensive logistics, inventory management, and other supply chain features. It has a materials focus, and the users model the supply chain via workflow and process mapping inside the software. This means that whatever occurs to the material – processing, packaging, transport – it can always be traced from the point of origin to end-use, tracking quality and ownership, and detailing traceability. This is one of the solutions’ differentiators. The high-level menu includes trading, traffic, hedging, controlling and accounting, and finance, and everything expected at first sight seems to be there with a tidy user interface. The materials’ focus is also seen in its 3D stockpile modeling and ability to track packaged products.
The product still has some areas of weakness in functionality for more traditional and more financial traders. Things like LME warrants have yet to be added but are on the development plan for next year. It already handles repo deals and many other familiar transaction types, but we feel it may also lack a bit of depth in reporting hierarchies for out and out trading firms. However, this is to be expected as the software is coming from a mining and extraction perspective instead of a marketing and trading background. For physical producers/traders in concentrates and ores, the solution has a real level of depth of functionality that will make it an essential product to consider, in our opinion. That is not to disparage its ability to handle derivatives, provide some risk management tools, and bridge the gap with corporate accounting and financial systems, as it is fairly robust in those areas.
Datamine is now ready to take this solution to market as a comprehensive CTRM and Commodity Management product. We expect it to be highly competitive and look forward to following Datamine’s progress in the coming months.