Supply Chain

News and analysis of supply chain strategies, sourcing, trends

The latest Supply Chain News & Analysis

US LTL carrier Estes hit by widespread systems outage

Eric Johnson, Senior Technology Editor | Oct 2, 2023, 2:31 PM EDT

A systems outage that has left less-than-truckload carrier Estes grappling with email, website and data exchange issues is the latest such incident to befall the logistics and transportation industry.
LTLLogistics technology

FMC mediation office ramps up help for US shippers seeking dispute relief

Teri Errico Griffis, Associate Editor | Oct 2, 2023, 12:36 PM EDT

Use of the little-known arm of the FMC comes as shippers are increasingly turning to US maritime regulators to perform a consumer protection function in the aftermath of pandemic-linked disruptions and broad shipping reform that became law 15 months ago.
Transport, trade and regulationContainer shipping

SC Ports turns to US Supreme Court in bid for relief over Leatherman dispute

Teri Errico Griffis, Associate Editor | Sep 28, 2023, 4:32 PM EDT

While the South Carolina Ports Authority cited the “urgency and importance” of the Leatherman terminal issue to the state and regional economies, getting on the Court’s docket is a daunting task.
North American portsContainer shippingContainer linesTransport, trade and regulation

UPS bolsters healthcare business with MNX Global Logistics acquisition

William B. Cassidy, Senior Editor | Sep 28, 2023, 10:10 AM EDT

The addition of Atlanta-based MNX closely follows an acquisition in France as UPS builds out its expedited and temperature-controlled capabilities in the healthcare sector.
Supply Chain

New Shanghai contract fails to budge skeptical carriers on container futures

Peter Tirschwell | Sep 27, 2023, 10:10 AM EDT

The concept of widespread use of a hedging tool continues to face an uphill battle within the container sector years after it was introduced, especially among carriers whose buy-in is considered essential to confer legitimacy on the fledging market.
Container shippingContainer linesTransport, trade and regulation

Inland23: Industry not holding its breath for immediate freight recovery

Eric Johnson, Senior Technology Editor | Sep 26, 2023, 4:31 PM EDT

A muted peak and post-peak season for imports and intermodal activity has shippers and service providers eyeing a freight rebound no earlier than late 2024.
Supply ChainIntermodal providersNorth-American rail

Uncertain US shippers shifting freight, altering inventory strategies

William B. Cassidy, Senior Editor | Sep 25, 2023, 4:22 PM EDT

The BlueGrace Logistics Confidence Index indicates retail shippers with “tremendous” inventories on hand are likely to move more small shipments as the holidays approach.
Supply Chain

New ZIM service takes advantage of Savannah’s expanding cold storage network

Teri Errico Griffis, Associate Editor | Sep 22, 2023, 12:25 PM EDT

Savannah attracted the new service due to its growing third-party logistics network and proximity to East Coast and Midwest markets, allowing for quicker and fresher imports.
North American portsContainer shippingContainer linesCool Cargoes

Pandemic, shipping reform boost caseload for harried FMC

Teri Errico Griffis, Associate Editor | Sep 22, 2023, 8:00 AM EDT

Shippers more than tripled their formal complaints in fiscal year 2022, emboldened by the maritime regulator’s sharpened focus on how ocean carriers interact with their customers.
Transport, trade and regulationContainer shippingContainer linesNorth American ports

Norfolk Southern teams with tech company to ease intermodal cargo flow

Ari Ashe, Senior Editor | Sep 20, 2023, 3:36 PM EDT

The Class I railroad and DrayNow will launch an app in 2024 designed to digitize, organize and streamline processes that have previously been performed via email or over the phone.
Logistics technologyNorth-American rail

Dynamics behind Flexport’s leadership change signal digital forwarding’s natural endpoint

Eric Johnson, Senior Technology Editor | Sep 19, 2023, 4:24 PM EDT

Much criticism has been leveled at the digital forwarding model, but steep declines in topline revenue during a year of weak demand are a sign that digital forwarders have had trouble differentiating themselves from the pack.
ForwardingLogistics technology

Green fuel costs could make nuclear ships economically viable: experts

Greg Knowler, Senior Editor Europe | Sep 18, 2023, 10:46 AM EDT

Small onboard nuclear reactors could ultimately be the lowest-cost method of decarbonization as shipping competes with other thirsty industries for sustainable net-zero fuels, according to energy and investment analysts.
MaritimeContainer shippingContainer linesLogistics technologyTransport, trade and regulation

Ocean carriers will look to ‘chokepoint’ assets for next wave of spending: analyst

Lars Jensen, CEO & Partner, Vespucci Maritime, and JOC Analyst | Sep 18, 2023, 10:00 AM EDT

Owning and operating potential supply chain chokepoints is a competitive advantage, and we should expect to see major carriers — flush with cash post-pandemic — be very active in attempting to secure such assets, writes analyst Lars Jensen.
Supply ChainContainer linesPortsMarine terminalsRail

Logistics provider GXO buys PFSweb amid end-to-end fulfillment rush

William B. Cassidy, Senior Editor | Sep 15, 2023, 12:57 PM EDT

The deal comes on the heels of other acquisitions and new services launched this week at several logistics and transportation providers, all aimed at expanding their ability to deliver end-to-end global fulfillment services.
Supply ChainLogistics technologyLast mile

Logistics software helping blur lines between forwarder, shipper processes: WiseTech CEO

Eric Johnson, Senior Technology Editor | Sep 14, 2023, 1:00 PM EDT

Richard White said in an interview with the Journal of Commerce the logistics industry is stuck in a pattern of tackling small problems instead of viewing international trade as a large, connected system.
Logistics technologyForwardingAir cargo forwardingSupply Chain

Forwarders now liable for export control violations as US tightens shipping security

Mark Szakonyi, Executive Editor | Sep 14, 2023, 10:49 AM EDT

Washington is urging NVOs and forwarders to “know their customer,” a steep challenge for co-loaders who bundle multiple shipments for multiple customers into a single container, writes Journal of Commerce Executive Editor Mark Szakonyi.
Transport, trade and regulationContainer shippingContainer linesForwarding

Logistics providers stake claim in potential-laden ‘end-to-end‘ space

Eric Johnson, Senior Technology Editor, and Teri Errico Griffis, Associate Editor | Sep 13, 2023, 2:46 PM EDT

It’s an open question whether shippers want end-to-end supply chain services from a single provider, but that hasn’t stopped names such as Amazon, Maersk and Flexport from building integrated solutions.
Supply ChainIndustrial real estate

Global shippers launch 600,000-TEU tender to fast-track decarbonization

Greg Knowler, Senior Editor Europe | Sep 13, 2023, 1:10 PM EDT

The bids would require carriers to quote a negotiated “green premium” that cargo owners would pay to transport the containers on ships powered by zero-carbon fuels.
MaritimeContainer shippingContainer linesLogistics technologyTransport, trade and regulation

Flexport’s bumpy evolution shows, ultimately, people and relationships matter

Peter Tirschwell | Sep 13, 2023, 9:34 AM EDT

As many have observed in disparaging the notion of a “digital” forwarder, of which Flexport was the prototype, forwarding at its core is a business of people solving real-world problems for which there is not — and probably never will be — a technology solution, writes Peter Tirschwell.
ForwardingTrans-PacificLogistics technology

Bed Bath & Beyond files FMC complaint against Yang Ming in capacity dispute

Teri Errico Griffis, Associate Editor | Sep 12, 2023, 4:15 PM EDT

The new allegation against Yang Ming comes less than a week after the carrier settled a dispute with another US importer, also over allegations it failed to honor vessel capacity commitments.
Transport, trade and regulationContainer shippingContainer lines

Flexport lost touch with customers under brief Clark reign: Petersen

Eric Johnson, Senior Technology Editor | Sep 12, 2023, 6:00 AM EDT

Flexport founder and CEO Ryan Petersen refused to pin the blame for the company’s abrupt change in leadership on waning freight demand, saying the forwarder “has been through worse macro environments.”
ForwardingSupply Chain

C.H. Robinson opens new Laredo facility amid boom in US-Mexico freight

William B. Cassidy, Senior Editor | Sep 11, 2023, 10:00 AM EDT

Steady gains in US-Mexico cross-border truck freight have spurred the logistics provider to open a 400,000-square-foot cross-dock warehouse in Laredo, a US border entry point already bursting with freight.
SurfaceTruckingSupply Chain

US cold storage supply struggling with costs, aging facilities amid high demand

Teri Errico Griffis, Associate Editor | Sep 11, 2023, 9:00 AM EDT

Investors aren’t lining up to sink money into aging facilities, given that warehouses built in the last 20 to 40 years require nearly 50% more energy consumption and double the maintenance costs than newbuilds.
Industrial real estateNorth American portsCool Cargoes

US truckload sector picks up pace to meet rising threat of cargo theft

Eric Johnson, Senior Technology Editor | Sep 8, 2023, 9:53 AM EDT

Freight brokers, load boards, technology providers and law enforcement are attempting to contain the growing threat of truckload cargo theft and the fraudulent schemes that underpin it.
TruckingTruck brokersTransport, trade and regulation

Drayage industry faces technology dilemma in down freight market

Eric Johnson, Senior Technology Editor | Sep 7, 2023, 3:58 PM EDT

While the importance of drayage came to the fore during the pandemic, the current freight hangover is cramping the sector’s ability to take advantage of technology options on the market.
Logistics technologyPortsNorth American portsTrucking

Clark departs Flexport amid differences with founder over strategic shift

Eric Johnson, Senior Technology Editor | Sep 6, 2023, 5:00 PM EDT

A difference of opinion over Flexport’s strategic shift toward fulfillment aimed at small businesses has prompted CEO Dave Clark to depart the company only a year after he came aboard.
ForwardingContainer shippingAir CargoAir cargo forwardingSupply ChainLogistics technology

Hapag-Lloyd miss on HMM highlights shipping’s lack of level playing field: analyst

Lars Jensen, CEO & Partner, Vespucci Maritime, and JOC Analyst | Sep 6, 2023, 12:18 PM EDT

There is nothing fundamentally wrong with countries protecting their shipping interests, but there are always ripple effects on the commercial side that benefit some stakeholders and disadvantage others, writes analyst Lars Jensen.
Container shippingContainer linesTransport, trade and regulation

Targeted replenishment thins US inventories without raising freight demand 

William B. Cassidy, Senior Editor | Sep 6, 2023, 10:39 AM EDT

Inventories are falling, but orders and shipments aren’t necessarily climbing as US retailers seek greater “inventory productivity” by closely tracking customer demand. 
Supply ChainTrucking

Market interest ‘should be very high’ in DB Schenker sale: CEO

Greg Knowler, Senior Editor Europe | Sep 6, 2023, 9:24 AM EDT

The German-based forwarder remains the largest and most attractive takeover target in a cash-rich industry where the main players are all looking for opportunities to consolidate.
MaritimeForwardingTruckingInternational railAir CargoAir cargo forwardingSupply Chain

LA-LB port interests spar with agency over emissions rule under development

Bill Mongelluzzo, Senior Editor | Sep 5, 2023, 4:12 PM EDT

The regional air quality board is pushing back against what it says is “grossly inaccurate rhetoric” from transport interests who say a cap on Southern California cargo volumes may be on the horizon.
North American portsContainer shippingMarine terminalsTransport, trade and regulation

OOCL Logistics joins growing group intrigued by trade finance potential

Eric Johnson, Senior Technology Editor | Sep 5, 2023, 1:56 PM EDT

Development of trade finance tools for small and medium-sized shippers continues to grow, evidenced by OOCL Logistics launching a trade finance platform with fintech provider Stenn.
Logistics technologyContainer linesForwardingSupply Chain

Key supply chain stakeholders commit to electronic bills of lading

Greg Knowler, Senior Editor Europe | Sep 4, 2023, 10:00 PM EDT

Digitalizing the most important document in global trade is a vital step toward a more efficient and secure paperless container shipping industry.
MaritimeContainer shippingContainer linesLogistics technology

Tactical M&A activity likely to surface in under-pressure US 3PL market

Eric Johnson, Senior Technology Editor | Sep 1, 2023, 11:23 AM EDT

Lenders are being choosy about which domestic logistics deals they finance, giving an edge to acquirers with cash saved up from the pandemic.
Supply Chain

FMC publishes list of NVOs at risk of losing licenses over tariff non-compliance

Teri Errico Griffis, Associate Editor | Aug 31, 2023, 3:31 PM EDT

The move is part of an ongoing effort by the FMC to bolster the oversight of regulated entities through “informed compliance,” an agency spokesperson said.
Transport, trade and regulationContainer shipping

Poor IT strategy over the years contributed to Yellow’s demise: analyst

Ted Prince, founder and CEO, Tri-Cities Intermodal LLC | Aug 30, 2023, 3:17 PM EDT

An LTL carrier such as Yellow is an extremely complicated business, and similar to the railroads, the enterprise software it used was developed internally — often over decades — because there was no “off-the-shelf” solution, writes analyst Ted Prince.  
Logistics technologyTrucking

Lawmakers push FMC to remove MTOs from demurrage billing requirements

Teri Errico Griffis, Associate Editor | Aug 25, 2023, 1:18 PM EDT

Two congress members, backed by terminal operators, are insisting maritime regulators follow the congressional intent that underpins OSRA-22 or risk “severe” disruptions to the US supply chain.
Transport, trade and regulationContainer shippingContainer linesMarine terminals

US Court of Appeals to hear Evergreen detention case against FMC

Teri Errico Griffis, Associate Editor | Aug 24, 2023, 1:58 PM EDT

The carrier is looking to have an earlier ruling by the FMC reversed, arguing that the agency turned the incentive principle guiding cargo flow through US marine terminals “on its head.”
Transport, trade and regulationMaritimeContainer shippingContainer lines

Data shows US in midst of extended period of inventory drawdowns: analyst

Jason Miller, associate professor of logistics at Michigan State University, and Journal of Commerce analyst | Aug 24, 2023, 11:31 AM EDT

Inventory drawdowns and right-sizing will keep Asia-to-US container and air freight volumes soft well into 2024, writes analyst Jason Miller.
Supply ChainContainer shippingAir Cargo

FMC’s Bentzel seeks industry input for agency’s data initiative

Teri Errico Griffis, Associate Editor | Aug 24, 2023, 10:21 AM EDT

With a formal request for information, Federal Maritime Commissioner Carl Bentzel believes the agency is introducing a more “transparent and inclusive process” with stakeholders when it comes to policymaking.
Transport, trade and regulationContainer shippingLogistics technology

M&A activity in 3PL sector continues as investment firm acquires Ascent

Eric Johnson, Senior Technology Editor | Aug 22, 2023, 1:19 PM EDT

Two weeks after Forward Air acquired forwarder Omni Logistics, a private investment fund has taken over expedited third-party logistics provider Ascent Global Logistics.
Supply ChainSurfaceTruckingTruck brokersAir cargo forwarding