StreetScooter provides electric vans and charging infrastructure for Amazon

Aachen-based manufacturer of electric commercial vehicles partners with Amazon, delivering 40 StreetScooter WORK Box vans and 60 charging stations
Vans will be deployed for last-mile delivery to customers in Munich
Munich,Aachen - Amazon has ordered 40 StreetScooter WORK Box electric vans which will be deployed at its distribution center in Munich Daglfing. Complementing the vehicle order, StreetScooter has also installed 60 charging stations at the Amazon site.

"We were very delighted that Amazon turned to StreetScooter for a climate-friendly delivery solution as well as our proven charging infrastructure expertise," said Jörg Sommer, CEO of StreetScooter GmbH.

"Amazon is committed to achieving the Paris agreement targets ten years ahead of schedule - in 2040 instead of 2050 - so we are collaborating with a number of different partners developing new technologies and helping promote a carbon-neutral economy," explained Adam Elman, Senior Lead Sustainability, Amazon Europe. "We look forward to working with StreetScooter and using their expertise to add additional electric vehicles and charging stations to our network and achieve carbon-neutral delivery operations."

StreetScooter's "Made in Germany" e-vans not only proved their ability to handle the heavy demands of last-mile delivery, but scored points for economy and ROI as well. According to Jörg Sommer, StreetScooter performs better in total cost of ownership after just a few years as compared to conventional combustion-engine vehicles.

Cai Mep International Terminal in Vietnam joins TradeLens

CMIT (Cai Mep International Terminal), a joint venture between Vinalines, Saigon Port and APM Terminals, joined the TradeLens digital platform, in support of the blockchain technology.

CMIT is one of the largest terminals in Cai Mep ? Thi Vai deep-water gateway port complex, which currently accommodates mainline vessels with a capacity up to 194,000DWT/21,500 TEU connecting Vietnam directly with main markets in Europe, North America and Asia. Being an important link in global trade, CMIT continuously pioneers to innovate and apply e-solutions in its daily operations such as e-invoice and e-cargo (customs link), and now joins Tradelens with the purpose of adding a new digital platform to deliver best-in-class service.

“In the context of constantly increasing demand for high quality online services by our customers, along with the robust development of global digitalization, joining Tradelens enables immediate updates on cargo data, hence directly supporting our customers’ supply chain planning efficiency. Tradelens is the industry leader, supported by the major shipping lines in developing blockchain solutions”, said Jan Bandstra, General Director, CMIT.

“By way of illustration, a seafood container export from Vietnam to US has more than 30 shipping milestones and shipment data at more than 10 relevant entities with requirement of close tracking. When the cargo data is transparent and enabled seamless, real-time information sharing at different stages by different entities in global supply chain will increase considerable efficiency for global trade flows”, Nguyen Xuan Ky, CMIT Deputy General Director, revealed.

TradeLens is an open and neutral blockchain-based platform that is digitizing the global supply chain and transforming trade. It brings together all parties in the supply chain?including beneficial cargo owners, freight forwarders, inland transportation providers including rail and trucking, ports and terminals, ocean carriers, customs and other government authorities?onto a single, secure data-sharing and collaboration platform. Developed in a collaboration between Maersk and IBM, TradeLens now is supported by over 100 diverse organizations across the industry like carriers Maersk, MSC, CMA CGM, ONE, Hapag Lloyd; biggest cargo owners like Procter & Gamble,…; global leading port operators like APM Terminals, PSA,…and Customs Authorities across the globe.

CMIT is proud of being the very first terminal in Vietnam joining Tradelens and this will contribute to encourage other terminals, its partners, customers and other business units in the local supply chain community to join this platform, hence promoting Vietnam’s foreign trade development.

Digitalization and automation will help e-commerce supply chains overcome the profitability challenge, says new DHL white paper

Online retailers and their logistics partners continue to face cost challenges, particularly in fulfillment and last mile delivery operations
New DHL white paper, Change at the Speed of the Consumer identifies ways in which innovation can alleviate cost pressure and manage growth surges
Ken Allen, DHL eCommerce Solutions CEO: "There is no 'silver bullet', but companies must embrace new technologies and innovate to thrive."

DHL, the world's leading logistics company, has identified digitalization and automation in the supply chain as an imperative for online retailers looking to grow and compete over the long-term. In its latest white paper, the company, which this year announced an investment of at least USD 2.2 billion in digitalization through 2025, provides new insights on how specific challenges within the e-commerce supply chain can be overcome with the support of new technologies.

"Change at the Speed of the Consumer: How E-Commerce is Accelerating Logistics Innovations" was authored by Professor Lisa Harrington, President and CEO of lharrington group llc. It looks at six principal areas where e-commerce is challenging the supply chains of merchants and logistics companies: customer expectations for a perfect buying experience; consumers' desire to buy and receive goods 'anywhere, anytime'; exploding demand for urban delivery; competition for labor and wage inflation; the emergence of new online sales models and unexpected surges in demand; and environmental concerns.

The impact of these challenges is most keenly felt in the areas of fulfilment and last mile delivery. Labor in the U.S., for example, which is the world's second largest e-commerce market accounts for 40-60% of warehousing operating costs. With real estate company CBRE predicting in 2018 that an additional 450,000 warehouse workers will be needed in the U.S. by the end of 2019 and unemployment at a consistently low rate, his presents a risk in terms of both cost and recruitment, particularly during peak periods. Increased urbanization, combined with heightened pressure - from both socially conscious consumers and municipal authorities, in particular - to reduce the environmental impact of transport operations is forcing retailers to seek out creative ways of balancing delivery convenience with reduced mileage for diesel-powered vehicles over the last mile.

Across each of the profitability challenges, technologies already exist that allow companies to reduce unit costs, better forecast needed inventory or increase productivity to absorb additional growth. Robotics and automated sorting systems, for example, allow companies to process higher order volumes without the need to engage large numbers of temporary workers. Advanced Warehouse Execution Systems, combining Internet of Things capabilities, machine learning, business intelligence and data mining agents can increase performance and responsiveness to meet rising customer expectations.

While autonomous vehicles for last-mile delivery still await regulatory approval in many markets, digitalization can already support better demand forecasting to allow inventory to be placed closer to the end customer and to optimize transport routings, reducing time on the road. As many of these technologies evolve further and new innovations come to the market, companies that are able to deploy them effectively within their supply chain will be best positioned to address the costly inefficiencies, volatile order trends and demanding customer expectations that characterize the fiercely competitive e-commerce market.

"The insights from this new white paper show that profitability is still a major challenge for many e-commerce companies, despite - or often actually because of - the dynamic growth of the sector. It also gives our customers a comprehensive overview of the specific areas where that challenge is most prevalent, and which technologies currently offer the most potential to support them," said Ken Allen, CEO, DHL eCommerce Solutions. "DHL's innovation approach is targeted at identifying, piloting and deploying across our global network the most effective technologies and solutions in each of these areas. We will continue to actively expand robotics and automation across many parts of our operations, for example, and we see artificial intelligence becoming an enabler throughout our business in the future. There is no 'silver bullet', but companies must embrace new technologies and innovate to thrive."

Acknowledging that innovation can itself be a profitability challenge, particularly if approached at the wrong pace or with excessive outlays of capital, the research also detailed a three-step approach to innovating successfully: focusing on innovations that provide differentiation; adopting a long-term, strategic view of innovation; and bridging the silos of people, software and machines.

"Given the complexity of the global logistics industry, the huge variance across markets and regulatory environments, and the competitive differentiation that comes from relationships and in-depth knowledge of customers' supply chains, we still see people playing a critical role in the industry for the foreseeable future," said Allen. "The companies that will win the race to future success are those that are able to combine the expertise of their people with software and machines most effectively."

DHL opened its newest Innovation Center - its third globally - in September 2019 in Chicago, U.S. The center acts as a hub for innovation, where DHL conducts research into the major trends shaping the logistics industry, explores customers' needs and readiness for more innovative solutions, and tests and pilots technologies with the highest potential for deployment.

Kuehne + Nagel joins the Development and Climate Alliance as a first mover in the logistics industry

The Alliance is backed by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development.
German Minister Dr. Gerd Müller: "The fact that Kuehne + Nagel, one of the world's leading logistics providers, has decided to join the alliance is a major step and shows that environmental protection and entrepreneurial action go hand in hand."

Kuehne + Nagel has announced its accession to the Development and Climate Alliance. The globally operating company is thus taking on a pioneering role in the logistics industry. The Alliance was launched in 2018 by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development in cooperation with the Research Institute for Applied Knowledge Processing and the German Society for International Cooperation. With the aim of simultaneously promoting development and environmental protection, the alliance recognises, links and promotes the commitment of the private sector.

German Federal Minister Dr. Gerd Müller states: "Climate change has long been the question of human survival. The industrialised countries in particular have a special responsibility. It is not only politics that is called upon to act, but also the private sector. With the Development and Climate Alliance, we have created a platform for this. I am very pleased that Kuehne + Nagel, one of the world's leading logistics providers, has decided to join the alliance. This is a major step and shows that environmental protection and entrepreneurial action go hand in hand."

Kuehne + Nagel is joining the alliance as part of its Net Zero Carbon programme launched in September 2019. Direct Kuehne + Nagel CO2 emissions that cannot be avoided will be fully compensated as of 2020. In addition, Kuehne + Nagel has decided to proactively address the CO2 footprint of the transportation services performed by its suppliers ? airlines, shipping lines and haulage companies ? by 2030. The Net Zero Carbon programme leverages three fields of action: detection, reduction and compensation of CO2. Kuehne + Nagel is investing in various nature-based CO2 compensation projects, where carbon is being taken from the atmosphere. These voluntary compensation measures are in line with the 17 goals of the United Nations for Sustainable Development (SDGs).

Otto Schacht, Member of the Management Board of Kuehne + Nagel International AG, responsible for Seafreight, comments: "With its Net Zero Carbon programme, Kuehne + Nagel acknowledges ? as a first mover in the logistics industry ? the responsibility it has for the environment, for the ecosystem and essentially for the people. By joining the Development and Climate Alliance, we support the goals of the German Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development. As a globally operating company, we are convinced that the private sector must also make its contribution to environmental protection."

Rethinking Packaging: DHL Trend Report discovers how e-commerce era drives wave of sustainability and efficiency

DHL survey reveals that packaging will be in the spotlight over the next five years as companies and customers demand sustainable packaging materials and less waste
Fast-tracked e-commerce deliveries require adoption of packaging optimization, automation, smart-packaging solutions and new conveniences to ensure outstanding customer experience
DHL calls its customers and partners to collaborate on rethinking packaging to drive innovation in logistics operations

DHL has released "Rethinking Packaging", a new Trend Report that offers a comprehensive look at the future of packaging in the logistics industry. The report breaks down the trends accelerating the need to rethink packaging, how industries and their packaging needs are evolving, and provides insights on how packaging innovations will shape greener and more efficient logistics operations across all sectors.

Driven by globalization and e-commerce, the overall volume of products shipped is rising, and packages are traveling further through longer, more complex cross-border logistics networks. A survey conducted by DHL on its customers and partners shows that for nine out of 10 companies, packaging will play an important role in the next three to five years. Fast-tracked deliveries and increasingly popular subscriptions services result in frequent single-item shipments, contributing to more carbon emissions and packaging waste. The expanded variety of e-commerce products has led to new challenges in shipping and packaging. Surveyed customers see themselves confronted with maintaining a reasonable spend on packaging, the number of shipments damaged in transit, as well as optimizing the available transport capacity.

Demand for more sustainable shipping is driving new efforts to minimize waste, promote green materials, and implement convenient recovery systems. Leading retailers are answering these expectations by providing hassle-free and recyclable materials, capitalizing on the new opportunity to delight the customer with aesthetically pleasing accessible packaging features.

Matthias Heutger, SVP, Global Head of Innovation & Commercial Development, DHL, explains: "The Trend Report and our customer survey illustrate just how important easy, recyclable, and robust packaging is to an overall positive customer experience. The acceleration of changing needs of companies, consumers, and the wider environment however increase costs and reduce effectiveness. We believe that the adoption of new packaging optimization tools, materials, and handling technologies will significantly boost efficiency and productivity. That in turn, will drive changes in the operation of supply chains and logistics processes."

Across industries, increasing demands are being placed on packaging. In the automotive and technology sectors, supply chains must evolve to accommodate growing volumes of delicate, high-value components. In healthcare, logistics professionals must ensure safe and compliant delivery of lifesaving medicines and devices to hospitals, communities, and patients' homes. As e-commerce usurps traditional retail, the package on the doorstep is now a critical touchpoint between consumers and brands.

Implications for the logistics industry

The logistics industry will play a key role in reducing the cost, inconvenience, and environmental impact of packaging. It must adopt new technologies, materials and processes across the value chain:

Packaging optimization
Shipments that are not completely filled up are a major cause of product damage and detriment to cost and sustainability measures. Therefore, companies are introducing software that expertly calculates the best possible ratio of items, cartons, and pallets and then communicates the results directly to pickers. OptiCarton for example, DHL's innovative package density optimization tool, maximizes carton and pallet space by more efficiently selecting and arranging packages based on size and weight.

Packaging automation
Automated unloading processes, end-of-line packing and labeling systems, and collaborative robots to relieve the burden of seasonal packaging and hiring needs will enable companies to balance the growing e-commerce market with an aging workforce.

Sustainable packaging material
In the DHL customer survey, the majority of respondents said that the introduction of sustainable packaging materials is their number one near-future packaging priority. Research into green alternatives to plastic shrink wrap and single-use plastic envelopes, as well as sustainable groceries' packaging is ramping up while at the same time, balancing cost and customer convenience is proving challenging for retailers.

Reusable packaging and reverse logistics
The adoption of reusable materials and closed-loop recycling programs to eliminate waste has increased lately, some challenges however remain. Industries considering building an economically viable reusable packaging system need to think about required size of the packaging material pool, the design of systems for cleaning, inspecting, and maintaining containers, and the cost, speed, and ease of use of reverse logistics processes.

Smart packaging
Smart-packaging technologies such as smart labels or tags and last mile product protection measures strengthen the connection between the customer, the supply chain, and the package via real-time updates on its condition and location.
The Trend Report demonstrates that the entire purpose of packaging has evolved. Reaching the next step in packaging performance will require close collaboration between supply chain experts, packaging specialists, and customers.