Amazon Inc plans to do to the trucking industry what Uber did to the taxi business
Amazon is building an app that matches truck drivers with shippers, a new service that would deepen its presence in the $800 billion trucking industry.
The app, scheduled to launch next summer, is designed to make it easier for truck drivers to find shippers that need goods moved, much in the way Uber connects drivers with riders. It would also eliminate the need for a third-party broker, which typically charges a commission of about 15% for doing the middleman work.
The app will offer real-time pricing and driving directions, as well as personalized features such as truck-stop recommendations and a suggested “tour” of loads to pick up and drop off. It could also have tracking and payment options to speed up the entire shipping process.
Amazon is considering creating its own fleet of air freight shippers to compete head-to-head with UPS, FedEx, and the USPS. A new report suggests that Amazon’s logistics ambitions could be even grander than anyone realized.
Internal company documents obtained by Bloomberg suggest that Amazon senior management reviewed a proposal to create a global logistics and fulfillment infrastructure as far back as 2013. The internal proposal, dubbed Operation Dragon Boat, illustrates a worldwide delivery system that transports goods produced by third-party suppliers from places like India and China all the way to a hypothetical home in Atlanta. This idea spans the entire shipping life cycle from the first mile to the much detested “last mile.”
The initiative would yield a new business line for Amazon, known as “Global Supply Chain by Amazon,” seeking to capitalize on the estimated $1 trillion in annual global cross-border e-commerce sales expected by 2020. Amazon could launch Global Supply Chain by Amazon as soon as later this year, claims Bloomberg.