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November 12 2018

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10 The Journal of Commerce | November 12 2018 Cover Story chain software. Put more simply, management of ocean freight processes is a critical function for global container shippers, but it is a small piece of the overall puzzle. To wit, INTTRA (as household a name as there is in ocean freight software) was acquired by a supply chain plan- ning and forecasting software pro- vider that many in the ocean freight world likely know little about. Global shippers are driving these aggregations of technology — whether via acquisition or strategic partnership — because the demands on their businesses are requiring better coordination of core logistics processes with upstream activities like sourcing and forecasting with downstream activities like ware- housing, fulfillment, and final-mile delivery. There's also the issue of viewing trade compliance as a sup- ply chain function, rather than a le- gal function, so it can be coordinated more effectively with logistics. THE ACQUISITION OF ocean freight commerce platform INTTRA by manufacturing-based supply chain management software provider E2open in October foreshadows major changes reshaping the supply chain software industry and how shippers use those systems. For one, the acquisition is part of a wider trend toward consoli- dation in the logistics and supply chain software markets, one in which platforms are coalescing around the idea that global man- ufacturers and retailers need to execute more processes on fewer common platforms. Shippers using supply chain software are increas- ingly seeking single networks that provide global reach and extended capabilities — tools that touch trade compliance, sourcing, demand forecasting, and planning. And then there's the issue of where ocean freight shipping resides in the broader hierarchy of supply E2open-INTTRA deal heralds evolution of supply chain management soware By Eric Johnson

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