Mar 29, 2019: The modern freight forwarder, Flexport, has announced the launch of OceanMatch, the first data-informed ocean freight consolidation offering that identifies available container space on compatible shipments and matches them to save Flexport shippers time, money and lower carbon footprint.
A Flexport review of all ocean freight imported into the US in 2018 found that full container load (FCL) containers were on average only 65 percent utilised, amounting to more than one-third of the available US-bound container space moving across the ocean without cargo.
For the first time, OceanMatch shippers can access the benefits of FCL freight - low prices, fast transit times and less risk of delay - without needing to fill or pay for a whole container.
The industry-first offering is made possible by Flexport’s operating system (OS) for global trade, a strategic operating model that blends technology, infrastructure and human expertise to deliver faster and more reliable transit times, lower and more predictable supply chain costs, and deep visibility and control from origin to destination.
“The most important goal of Flexport’s technology-first approach to freight is that we unlock new opportunities for our customers,” said Ryan Petersen, CEO and founder of Flexport. “That is why we are making meaningful investments in technology, infrastructure and expertise. The launch of OceanMatch is a key example of our OS for global trade coming to life. Where other freight forwarders see shipments as just a twenty or forty foot container, our data tells us this is a thousand pairs of shoes and that’s a hundred mountain bikes. It’s that insight that lets us do more for our clients’ shipments and supply chain priorities.”
Flexport OceanMatch provides distinct benefits compared to each shipment category. LCL cargo used to complete an OceanMatch container will receive the same priority level as a traditional FCL shipment, meaning cargo is unloaded and dispatched first upon arrival, which can dramatically improve final destination delivery times. Furthermore, clients who traditionally ship only once per week can now further secure their supply chains by shipping at least twice per week using Flexport OceanMatch at only marginally increased cost.
Ram Siddarth, Vice President of Ocean Consolidations at Flexport, added: “Shippers have always had to choose between shipping cadence and container utilization. If you chose to purchase in smaller quantities or if your factory couldn't produce enough inventory on time to fill up a container, you had no choice but to sacrifice container utilization and ship a partly empty container, or risk disrupting your supply chain. OceanMatch lets Flexport customers optimize for both speed and efficiency, all powered by data.”
Last month, Flexport has raised $1 billion investment led by the SoftBank Vision Fund, with significant participation from existing investors Founders Fund, DST Global, Cherubic Ventures, Susa Ventures and SF Express.
Flexport today connects almost 10,000 clients and suppliers across 109 countries, including established global brands like Georgia-Pacific as well as emerging innovators like Sonos. Flexport offers a full range of services, including ocean, air, truck and rail freight, drayage and cartage, warehousing, customs and trade advisory, financing, and insurance.