March 20 – March 27, 2014

FastFreight is a weekly review summarizing the ten major events or stories of the past week in logistics and the supply chain. We know you’re busy so each post is under 500 words. Enjoy! Want to get this to your inbox? Be sure to sign up from the right sidebar!

1. FMC Approves P3 Alliance via @MikeWackett

Despite reservations from former FMC head, the P3 alliance (Maersk, MSC, CMA CGM) was approved on the condition that the members address shipper concerns of rising shipping costs and service reductions. Approval for the Chinese leg of the alliance is still pending.

2. Slowing rate decline

While the P3 approval may not have other carriers thrilled, they can still smile, as the ongoing rate decline for East-West routes finally slagged off due to expected rate increases.

3. Increased US factory output via @Woellert

It’s not just carriers that are smiling. US factory output rose by 0.8% in February, the highest rise in half a year. Analysts are blaming extreme weather for the six-month slump.

4. The Terminator Packager

US factory output may keep on rising, given the influx in robots being used in factories, from KIVA’s robotonic forklifts at Amazon’s warehouses to Rethink Robotics “Baxter” (see video).

5. Index Linked Contracts

Due to rapid fluctuations in rate pricing, forwarders are trying to avoid annual rate contracts, opting for rates that are linked indexes instead.

6. Houston Ship Channel partially opens

Four days after the Houston Ship Channel closed because of a 4,000 bunker fuel barrel spill, it partially reopened for daytime traffic on March 26. Being closed for four days ruins the channel’s stats – last year it was only closed for 26 hours.

7. Foreign government port support harming Port of Rotterdam

A Port of Rotterdam report concluded that foreign government support of ports in Germany and Belgium are “robbing” the port of one million TEU annually.

8. Speaking about theft…

A report from the Transported Asset Protection Association showed that cargo theft in EMEA has shot up by 66% this year, with an average loss of $326,819 per crime (compared to an average of only $80,000 per crime in 2008).

9. No runway? No problem.

British engineers have bought back a 92 meter helium blimp from the US Army and are planning on using it to revolutionize air freight. The blimp can land on virtually any flat surface, including water.

10. Runaway train? Never coming back.

An eight -car subway at Chicago’s O’Hare Airport derailed and literally drove up an escalator. Initial investigations indicate that the operator dozed off (video).

Freightos Updates

  • Freightos just launched a brand new website! Check it out and let us know what you think!
  • We’ve also just announced Freightos has gotten $4.6 million dollars in investments to help us scale more aggressively around the world. Read all about it on Techcrunch!
  • Freightos is going to be at Intermodal Brazil in Sao Paulo, SITL in Paris and Multimodal UK in Birmingham. Set up a meeting with us now!

 See you next week!

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