A great article by DEREK THOMPSON
It is right on target about the reasons– they are supply chain reasons. Amazon covets the urban locations to speed up deliveries; but it would be fantastically complex to procure and engineer these one at a time. With the Whole Foods locations, they now have drop-off points for overnight delivery, and mini-warehouses for food items, especially those that need ‘fresh’ or ‘frozen’ treatment. $14 billion is cheap in terms of accessibility to a population, say within a circle of a given radius.
Perhaps we should rate warehouses and depots by a distribution of the number of customers in a unit of area.
The retailer’s $14 billion bet isn’t just about the future of food. It’s about becoming the one-stop shop for your entire life.
Source: Why Amazon Bought Whole Foods – The Atlantic
Drewry’s Container Insight Weekly had this detailed piece on West Coast usage by large ships. The major takeaway: bigger ships are calling but it may be too soon for many of the ULCC (18000 teu or so) to call yet, due to port related delays. There’s also a sort of bedlam caused by the reshuffling alliances; the firms in each alliance have different preferences as to which terminal to use at the ports. Hence there’s no stability in where a ship might call on each visit. To fix this will require compromise on ocean carrier objectives, like “always use our affiliated terminal when you come to LA”. Stability would make it simpler for the terminals to plan how to unload or load and get the customers’ cargoes on the way to their destinations. That part is challenging enough for the ports terminal operators today. Everyone has to work together to improve the customer (cargo owner) journey (literal and figurative!!!).
The number of containerships of 13,000 teu or above deployed on the Asia-US West Coast trade has nearly doubled since the start of 2017. How long before the mega-ships arrive?
Source: Drewry – Weekly Feature Articles – West Coast upgrade
Posted in Logistics, Ports, Production Operations, Shipping, Strategy, Supply Chains
Tagged alliances, big ships, container shipping, intermodal, Logistics, mergers, ocean shipping, Shipping, supply chains
Good article on the effects of larger box ships (which are calling at fewer ports). The hinterland infrastructure is going to have to adjust. I don’t think the ocean carriers are going back to smaller ships. The big ones are just too efficient to give up.
Source: Bigger box ships calling at fewer ports puts serious pressure on hinterland connections – The Loadstar
Posted in Logistics, Managerial Econ, Ports, Service Management, Shipping, Strategy, Supply Chains
Tagged alliances, big ships, container shipping, disruption, infrastructure, intermodal, Logistics, maritime, mergers, ocean shipping, ports, Shipping, ships, supply chains, transportation