Retailers, Logistics Firms Expand Final-Mile Delivery to Meet Rising E-Commerce Expectations

Transport Topics | April 11, 2019

Retailers, Logistics Firms Expand Final-Mile Delivery to Meet Rising E-Commerce Expectations
Retailers and transportation providers are embracing a blend of final-mile delivery strategies to keep pace with rapidly shifting online shopping habits.As e-commerce continues to expand, companies increasingly are offering options such as home delivery and installation of heavy appliances and in-store pickup of fresh groceries ordered online, industry leaders said at the Home Delivery World trade show here April 4-5.“Consumers are getting more and more comfortable with buying everything online, including items they were hesitant about before,” said Dan Walsh, president of XPO Logistics’ last-mile business, which provides home deliveries of bulky goods such as appliances, furniture, fitness equipment and building supplies.

Spotlight

Regardless of the type of fleet, every fleet professional should understand the importance of implementing a cycling schedule on their leased fleet vehicles. A cycling schedule is a planned replacement schedule for fleet vehicles based on miles or engine hours accumulated and/or months in service.


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PROCUREMENT AND SOURCING

Nulogy Launches Free Trial of Production Scheduling Solution for All Contract Suppliers

Nulogy | September 24, 2021

Nulogy, a leading provider of agile supply chain solutions, today announced the free trial release of its standalone Production Scheduling Solution for all contract manufacturers and co-packers in the supply chain industry. The Nulogy Production Scheduling Solution is an intuitive, real-time visualization tool that enables contract manufacturers and co-packers to quickly assess and optimize their production schedules based on various constraining factors, such as order promise date, planned downtimes, changeovers, labor availability, material availability, run rates by product and equipment, and more. The solution is purpose-built for the complexities involved in contract packaging and manufacturing operations, as well as the multiple factors required to manage and adjust a contract supplier's production schedule. The standalone release of the Production Scheduling Solution offers any contract supplier a free, 60-day test run of the cutting-edge capabilities that the Nulogy platform provides. Launched earlier in 2021, the Production Scheduling Solution was previously available only to contract supplier businesses using the Nulogy platform, but is now open to the general market. "As the consumer packaged goods industry continues to rapidly evolve, it is critical that contract suppliers today have the modern tools needed to thrive as well as deliver superior service," said Jason Tham, CEO, Nulogy. "By launching our free trial of the Nulogy Production Scheduling Solution, we are offering both contract manufacturers and co-packers a glimpse into how purpose-built, data-driven digital tools can make their businesses more agile and efficient, while enabling them to better serve brand manufacturer customers." By replacing spreadsheet-based scheduling workflows, customers using the Nulogy Production Scheduling Solution have observed operational gains such as: More than 100% improvement in scheduling efficiency More than 20% On-Time In-Full improvement More than 20% profitability improvement through labor cost reduction About Nulogy Nulogy, a leading supplier of agile supply chain solutions, allows consumer brands to respond with ease and speed to a volatile retail and consumer environment while reducing waste and costs. Designed to optimize contract manufacturing and co-packing operations and enhance supply chain collaboration, Nulogy's cloud-based software platform allows consumer brands and their external suppliers to unleash innovation in the consumer products value chain and accelerate brand growth.

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LOGISTICS

PLS Logistics Services Acquires D&L Transport

PLS Logistics Services | September 23, 2021

PLS Logistics Services, a leading, technology-driven, third-party logistics company has acquired D&L Transport, a transportation brokerage headquartered in Overland Park, Kansas. D&L Transport will continue to operate under its authority and remain an independent subsidiary of PLS, leveraging PLS's advanced technology and national carrier network while maintaining its independent operations. Brian DeFrain, a 10-year veteran of D&L Transport, will remain in the role of President of D&L. All existing management and employees will remain with the organization following the acquisition. Greg Burns, Chief Executive Officer of PLS Logistics, said, "D&L Transport through its national agent network has developed a broad range of services, with particular strength in the dry van, flatbed and refrigerated modes, and an outstanding reputation for customer service." Brian DeFrain, President of D&L Transport, remarked, "We are excited to partner with PLS Logistics and get immediate access to its broad service offering and industry-leading technology, while maintaining our independent operations." Founded in 2004, D&L Transport is a non-asset provider of Truckload solutions in North America. D&L Transport brings a strong management team and talented sales agents to PLS, as well as a robust network of shippers and carriers. Effective with this transaction, PLS will have an annual revenue run rate of $950mm and expects annual revenue of approximately $1.2 billion in 2022. About PLS Logistics Services PLS Logistics Services is a leading provider of logistics management, brokerage and technology services for shippers across all industries. PLS handles over a million loads annually across all major freight modes: flatbed, van, LTL, rail and barge, air and ocean. The PLS carrier network consists of over 65,000 pre-qualified trucking companies along with Class-1 railroads and major barge companies.

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SUPPLY CHAIN

project44 Buys Last-Mile Delivery and Customer Experience Leader, Convey, in $255M Acquisition

project44 | September 22, 2021

project44, the global leader in real-time supply chain visibility, today announced that it has acquired Austin-based Convey, the last-mile technology leader that powers exceptional direct-to-consumer delivery experiences for more than 200 of the world’s largest brands, including The Home Depot, Nieman Marcus, Ferguson, Ingram-Micro, and others. Convey, recognized as a Challenger in the Gartner 2021 Magic Quadrant for Real-Time Visibility Platforms, combines real-time visibility, post-purchase experiences, and machine learning-powered analytics to improve the overall customer experience. Together, the two companies now serve the global supply chain end-to-end, providing real-time visibility and actionable insights from raw materials to the front door to help brands deliver differentiated direct-to-consumer and eCommerce experiences for their customers. The acquisition, for $255 million in total consideration, is project44’s third in 2021 and its largest to date, cementing the company’s position as the connective tissue for modern supply chains. Having achieved unicorn status earlier this year with a valuation of more than $1.2 billion dollars, project44 is the largest visibility platform company as measured by ARR, customer count, and number of carriers. With Convey, project44 now connects more than 880 global shippers and third-party logistics providers with a network of 113,000 carriers, 2.6 million assets and more than 9 billion last-mile shipment events to help shippers optimize costs, grow revenue, improve speed and service and improve the delivery experience. This acquisition is also significant because it demonstrates project44’s position as the acquirer of choice for Generation 2 logistics technology companies. With three such acquisitions in the past six months, including Ocean Insights, ClearMetal, and now Convey, project44 is the largest Generation 2 logistics technology brand. These modern tech stacks allow project44 to rapidly reuse componentry from the acquired company’s technology within the project44 platform in a dramatically shorter turn-around time than is possible for traditional Generation 1 logistics technology companies. Once a back-office function, supply chain is now recognized by consumers and the industry as one of - if not the most - critical business function from main street to Wall Street, the world over. According to Gartner®, Inc., “enabling end-to-end supply chain visibility, providing access to customer experience (CX) data and aligning with organization-wide CX structures and initiatives are the top actions being taken to drive a more CX-focused supply chain culture.”1 “project44 is solving today’s most critical business challenge - how to deliver on continuously evolving customer expectations while remaining operationally efficient during unprecedented uncertainty and growing complexity,” said Jett McCandless, CEO and founder of project44. “Our acquisition of Convey brings project44 all the way to the front doorstep and helps our partners become more proactive and efficient so they can get people the products they want and need this holiday and beyond.” project44 and Convey radically change the way companies view, learn, and react to downstream changes, such as shipping delays, ETA changes, COVID-related worker shortages and port closures. As companies enter a tenuous holiday season, the demand for total order visibility and the ability to get ahead of issues before they occur has never been greater. Added capabilities from Convey, including the ability to resolve parcel delivery issues through automated customer communication, have bolstered project44’s suite of workflow solutions, allowing carriers and logistics service providers to spend less time working manually and more time focused on their core business. “The stakes are high for companies to not only fulfill and ship orders but to make the right promises about availability and delivery. However, volatile conditions, overwhelming complexity and blind spots in the supply chain make this difficult to achieve,” continued McCandless. “We’ve solved this with the acquisition of Convey, making project44 the unequivocal choice for any company that wants to leverage supply chain and logistics as a competitive advantage and driver of brand loyalty.” Together, project44 and Convey provide a single solution that delivers value to customers and supply chain partners by: Establishing a unified view of the supply chain - from raw materials to the consumer’s door Providing the same managed and superior consumer delivery experience capabilities in eCommerce to the much larger B2B market Streamlining the day-to-day workflows and collaboration between shippers, sellers and carriers to optimize for reduced overhead and increased time spent on value-added work Expanding the impact of AI on the supply chain through predictive ETAs and dynamic transit times both pre-and-post purchase, powered by the industry’s most trusted, comprehensive, and high-quality transportation dataset “Salesforce, Google and Adobe have transformed virtually every aspect of the digital customer experience through visibility and intelligent decisioning in the shape of marketing automation, targeted advertising and personalization. Now with Convey, project44 is bringing this approach and cutting-edge technology to the most complex customer experience challenge yet: the supply chain,” said Rob Taylor, founder and CEO of Convey. “We are thrilled to merge forces with project44 and look forward to continuing to build out one of the world’s greatest and most disruptive software companies.” Improving the Customer Experience “With thousands of shipments in-flight at any point in time and the details around those orders living in many disparate systems across our organization, it can be difficult to figure out which ones need our immediate attention,” said Devin Van Hout, vice president of digital commerce at Ferguson Enterprises. “Convey’s solution gives our team all the information we need to go from reactive to proactive, while also providing us with the tools to communicate with all relevant parties within the same view. The result is a simple, consistent customer experience in the face of massive B2B complexity.” project44 will host the first-of-its-kind virtual Supply Chain Live event at 9:00 a.m. CST on September 28. The event will spotlight the challenges facing brands as they approach retail’s busiest season amidst another disruptive year, and feature a fireside chat with Gartner Vice President of Research, Bart De Muynck. To register for Supply Chain Live or to learn more about the key insights from the project44 platform that are critical to retail’s supply chain, visit project44.com. About project44 project44 is the world’s leading advanced visibility platform for shippers and logistics service providers. project44 connects, automates and provides visibility into key transportation processes to accelerate insights and shorten the time it takes to turn those insights into actions. Leveraging the power of the project44 cloud-based platform, organizations increase operational efficiencies, reduce costs, improve shipping performance, and deliver an exceptional experience to their customers. Connected to thousands of carriers worldwide and having comprehensive coverage for all ELD and telematics devices on the market, project44 supports all transportation modes and shipping types, including Air, Parcel, Final-Mile, Less-than-Truckload, Volume Less-than-Truckload, Groupage, Truckload, Rail, Intermodal, and Ocean. In 2021, project44 was named a Leader among Real-Time Transportation Visibility Providers in Gartner’s Magic Quadrant. About Convey Convey is the global leader in Delivery Experience Management (DEM) and powers exceptional customer delivery experiences for some of the world’s most recognizable brands in retail and logistics. The company’s DEM platform combines estimated delivery date in cart, real-time visibility in-transit, post-purchase communications, and AI-driven insights to create a solution capable of perfecting last mile delivery.

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LOGISTICS

Ezyhaul and DHL invest US$ 20M in UK based logistics tech startup Digihaul

Ezyhaul | September 21, 2021

Leading South Asia Digital Freight Platform, Ezyhaul, today announced that together with Deutsche Post DHL, it has invested US$ 20 million in UK based tech start-up Digihaul. DigiHaul connects shippers to qualified transporters through a frictionless digital freight platform, helping to tackle some of the biggest challenges in the supply chain industry. Having built one of the UK's largest transporter networks, DigiHaul provides shippers with immediate access to capacity across the UK with upfront pricing, and gives transporters the opportunity to take on new jobs, enabling them to grow or optimise their operations with new routes and backloading. "This is a fantastic opportunity for us. We are very happy with the investment and strong support from industry leaders like DHL and Ezyhaul. It's a clear recognition that we are on the right path and have a true opportunity to transform and modernise the UK transportation industry," says Martin Willmor, chief executive officer (CEO) of Digihaul. "We are designed to provide the simplicity and convenience users have come to expect from digital services. There's no reason why freight management has to be time consuming and complex." The UK market is facing a critical driver shortage, while at the same time roughly 20% of trucks on the road are running empty. DigiHaul aims to tackle these challenges at a national level by providing a platform to optimise the UK's transportation network. DigiHaul offers a simple, fast and transparent digital platform that replaces the manual and time-consuming process of managing multiple subcontractors, calling around for quotes, physical paperwork and billing. Shippers can book a load through DigiHaul in just a few clicks, manage documentation and payment in one place and track the shipment through its entire journey. Meanwhile, transporters can log into the app to secure the jobs they want quickly and invoice automatically. The investment from Ezyhaul and DHL represents a commitment by both businesses to supply chain digitalisation. Ezyhaul and DHL will both take a share in DigiHaul, and the investment will be used to support ambitious growth plans through customer and transporter acquisition. Raymond Gillon, CEO Ezyhaul, says: "We are very excited with the opportunity to invest in Digihaul. The team has demonstrated their ability to rapidly scale the solution in UK, growing 20 times since the start of the year. Leveraging Ezyhaul's technology and experience combined with DHL's network and expertise, Digihaul will undoubtedly take a leading position in the UK market very soon and will drive positive change for both shippers and transporters." About Ezyhaul Ezyhaul is South Asia's largest digital road freight platform focused on simplifying and transforming logistics. Ezyhaul provides shippers access to immediate capacity with transparent pricing and provides transporters the opportunity to find new jobs enabling them to grow or optimise their operations. Ezyhaul takes away the manual effort and complexity of freight booking with a fully managed online service that's simple, fast and reliable. Headquartered in Singapore, Ezyhaul currently operates in India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines and Thailand.

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Spotlight

Regardless of the type of fleet, every fleet professional should understand the importance of implementing a cycling schedule on their leased fleet vehicles. A cycling schedule is a planned replacement schedule for fleet vehicles based on miles or engine hours accumulated and/or months in service.

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