Digital Freight Brokers Turn Physical With Truck Equipment Pools – Wall Street Journal

By Team Writer / June 5, 2019

Digital freight marketplaces are becoming more innovative because apart from seeking to connect shippers and truckers online they now provide physical operations that involves helping cargo carriers to move their loads to any destination. Some of the companies that recently made a launch of trailer fleets are startups like Convoy for fleets and also Uber Technologies’ Freight division and shippers can use these services to preload their trucks with goods in order to speed up the process of cargo transfer for both their drivers and also the shippers who are on their network. Another company that is active in this field is J.B. Hunt Transport Services Inc that is testing a drop and hook service that gives drivers that ability to hitch their vehicles to trailers that are already filled using the company’s digital platform for carrying out brokerages. This service is not yet out but will be launched at the summer. This sector has been known to be using apps, algorithms and machine learning to arrange between shippers and trucks but now that they are doing physical operations, it represents a notable shift in their operations. This shift is because many investors are investing heavily on brokerage startups that are focused on technology and traditional transport companies are also investing into building their own digital freight platforms.

Key Takeaways:

  • The service allows truck drivers to pick up pre-loaded trailers rather than wait for hours for workers to load and unload cargo.
  • The service most benefits independent carriers and smaller operations in an industry in which 96% of businesses operate no more than six trucks.
  • The change coincides with other online businesses blurring the distinction between physical and digital, such as Amazon and Wayfair opening bricks and mortar stores.

“Freight-matching startups Convoy and Uber Technologies Inc.’s Freight division recently launched fleets of trailers that shippers can preload with goods to speed up cargo transfers for drivers and shippers on their networks.”

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Team Writer