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With a history of more than a hundred and forty years, Motion Smith in Singapore is a name that is familiar to mariners worldwide. The company has been serving the shipping industry over the years and has established itself as one of the leading supplier of nautical charts,publications, equipment, ECDIS, digital charts and publications, and other marine systems and software.


Motion Smith is an International Admiralty Chart Agent (IACA). As such, we also provide shipping companies with a wide range of value-added services. Some of the services include ship's inventory management and audit of charts and publications carried out by the company's staff onboard vessels. These services play an important part in promoting safety at sea and ship-operators comply with the ISM Code.

Values, Vision and Mission

Our Values

"TORCH”, a ground-up initiative from our employees, emphasizing the values of: Teamwork,  Openness, Respect, Commitment and Honesty.

By embodying the values of TORCH, we develop a common ground to connect to one another despite regional and cultural differences. TORCH creates an alignment between individuals and directs us to serve our customers better.

Our Vision

Motion Smith aims to position ourselves as our customer’s first choice in the minds of global marine communities and worldwide shipping companies when requiring navigational products and navigation related solutions.

Our Mission

Motion Smith is committed to achieving sustainable business growth by constantly on the lookout for trusted vendors and integrating their finest software tools available in the market under Motion Smith branding which is accessible to global consumer of navigational products. 

Our Story

  • 1858


    Beginning of the company at Commercial Square in Singapore.

  • 1864


    James Motion started as an assistant with the Thomson Brothers (another watch and clock maker & repairer) at Battery Road.
  • 1867


    James Motion moved over to join Huxtable & Co as John Huxtable’s assistant at Flint Street.
  • 1868


    James Motion took over the business at Flint Street and renamed the business Motion, James. He carried on the business as a jeweller, watch maker and instrument maker until his death in 1893.
  • 1893


    James Motion was succeeded by Mr Lawson.
  • 1897


    Mr Donald Maw, a certified compass adjuster, took over. He was with Messrs John Little & Co. for 15 years before joining Motion, James. He was a noted huntsman and the first European to shoot tigers in Singapore.
  • 1921


    Mr F W Margrett of S. Smith & Son (Siam) Ltd bought over James Motion & Co.
  • 1922


    A limited company Motion Smith & Son Ltd was formed with nine local shareholders. Mr Maw managed the business until 1923, when he left Singapore with his wife. Over the next twenty years, the established activities were extended to include naval charts and marine instruments on a substantial scale.
  • 1941


    Business continued until World War 2 when, with the Japanese occupation imminent, the Royal Engineers smashed up the stock lest it fall into enemy hands.
  • 1948


    The premises were then occupied by Indian shopkeepers until 1948 when they were obliged to leave. W.F. Stanley & Co, the U.K. instrument makers, who held 90% of the shares, then send out a manager to restart the business.
  • 1971


    W.F. Stanley had suffered adverse trading conditions during the 1960’s and were taken over by Clarke & Smith Ltd of the U.K.  Sime Darby acquired the whole equity of Motion Smith & Son Ltd from Major Clarke.
  • 1978


    In July 1978, Motion Smith & Son Ltd’s operations were transferred to Motion Smith, a division of Sime Darby Singapore Private Limited.
  • Present


    The business has developed successfully over the years. Today, with our core competency in the marine market, our main activities lies in the supply of navigational aids, nautical instruments and digital products. Value-added services have increased in keeping with the demand for enhanced safety and regulatory requirements for shipping.
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The company has been serving the shipping industry over the years and has established itself as one of the leading supplier of nautical charts, publications, equipment, ECDIS, digital charts and publications, and other marine systems and software. Our branches in Malaysia and Thailand enhance its capability to support and service the shipping industry worldwide.

The company is certified to ISO 9001:2015 Quality Management System. This, together with the necessary expertise, Motion Smith is confident of providing quality and value-added products and services to all our customers.

Our Competencies



Proven solution provider for navigation related products & service operating in Singapore since 1858.



Local knowledge from serving various types of vessels with diverse customer profile in Asia.



One of the largest stockist in Southeast Asia. With full range of UKHO titles including major publishers like IMO, Witherby, ITU, etc.



Active chart management system that tracks and advises ship management companies on new edition when available.



Able to supply locally in many parts of the world. Thus, creating savings for our customers.



After office hour team readily available to fulfil urgent orders at short notice.