Supply chain and logistics have become the center of attention over the last couple of years, and the industries are not slowing down any time soon. Below is a roundup of recent headlines in the space that you should be aware of.
Shopify’s goal is to provide two-day shipping in the United States for all Shopify merchants utilizing the Shopify warehouse network. This comes during a time of continued spending across the board from many industry players to provide better e-commerce and transportation to shippers. Shopify investors are hesitant about the large amounts that are being allocated toward the fulfillment side of the company.
The United States Postal Service is catering to smaller, local businesses through a new service called Connect Local. Through Connect Local, USPS will deliver local packages the same day or next day when shipper bring packages to their local USPS between 5-7 AM. This new model also bypasses the larger USPS sorting plants and packages going to local addresses stay at the Post Office, further shortening the delivery time.
As retailers build up reserves of inventory, they are finding it more and more difficult to find warehouse space to store it. Both retailers and 3PLs are getting more creative with their solutions and are exploring facilities that are more inland, building multi-story facilities that work better in cities, and utilizing several smaller facilities rather than one large one.
USPS has been having a rough go as of late, with a $1.3 billion loss in the first quarter of 2022. Trying to stay relevant with the prevalence of other large carriers like FedEx and UPS, lawmakers are attempting to buoy the government run USPS by adjusting the benefits offered to employees and USPS’ offerings as well. The Postal Reform Bill has been passed by the House of Representatives and now proceeds to the Senate, after which, if successful, it will land on President Biden’s desk.
Eyebrows have been raised recently by the funding in the Logistics and Supply Chain space, particularly regarding technology solutions. Acquisitions in the space are only speeding up and can be expected to continue as more and more eyes focus on the industry.
As a crisis in Ukraine becomes more and more likely, many in the supply chain industry are turning their thoughts to the possible outcomes of war. Russia is a huge energy supplier and sanctions on their energy industry are increasingly likely. Both the export and transport of other goods could also be impacted by a conflict—Ukraine and Russia both produce a very large percentage of the world's wheat and corn.