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June 25 2018

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14 The Journal of Commerce | June 25 2018 www.joc.com International Maritime portation, customs compliance, e-commerce fulfillment, and last-mile logistics, among more niche tools. Since going public, Wise- Tech in two years has built regional footholds in a number of markets to complement its core CargoWise One platform. The company primarily competes with Descartes and BluJay Solutions in provid- ing multifaceted systems for forwarders. Increasingly, that means offering tools that go beyond the core shipment management, finance, and back office functions that defined these systems in the past. WiseTech acquired 11 companies in 2017 and has added seven more in the first half of this year. Those acquisitions include WISETECH GLOBAL'S PURCHASE of cloud- based transportation management system (TMS) developer SaaS Transportation is the latest example of a burgeoning arms race between the top global providers of enter- prise freight forwarding software. The deal, for which financial terms were not disclosed, is a continuation of the Austra- lia-based company's aggressive acquisition spree since going public in 2016, and parallels moves by its top competitor, Descartes Systems Group, to add North American trans- portation technology tools to its platform. The race is on between these companies to bolster their portfolio of solutions to account for growing demand in freight trans- providers of customs, warehouse, and transportation management in France, Bel- gium, Ireland, North America, Australasia, Italy, Germany, Turkey, the Netherlands, Argentina, Brazil, Uruguay, and Taiwan. By comparison, Descartes has acquired 22 companies — ranging from customs, final mile, freight transportation, visibility, and e-commerce solutions providers — in the last six years. BluJay is the rebranded, merged entity from Kewill's 2016 purchase of TMS provider LeanLogistics. SaaS Transportation's system is focused around less-than-truckload (LTL) manage- ment, with integrated quoting, booking, and tracking. The company, founded in 2011 by SMALLER AND MORE specific con- signments, more frequent shipping, rising demand for e-commerce, and greater availability of supply chain data appear to be behind growth in the less-than-containerload (LCL) segment of the market. That's spurring forwarders to launch even more new LCL services. UPS this month added direct LCL sailings in 130 lanes with origin and destination countries covering most of the globe, including ports in Asia, Latin America, Africa, Europe, the United States, the Caribbean and the Middle East. German and European LCL market leader Dachser will be launching 26 new LCL services and increasing the frequency of six services from every fortnight to weekly, and UK forwarder Davies Turner is adding export LCL shipments to its UK-China rail services, while Vanguard Logistics Services is launching a door-to-door digital platform aimed at LCL shippers. While LCL data on many trades are hard to come by, data from PIERS, a sister product of The Journal of Com - merce within IHS Markit, show that US imports of less than one TEU in the first quarter rose almost 10 per- cent for a total of 209,454 TEU, com- pared with a decline of 1.3 percent in the first three months of 2017. The Journal of Commerce con- tacted several global forwarders, and all confirmed they are seeing a significant increase in the number of customers requiring LCL cargo shipments across the major trades. While they differ on the reasons for this rising demand, it appears the changing nature of trade flows and an evolving supply chain have created an environment where shipping smaller consignments more frequently makes sense. Felix Heger, DHL Global Forward - ing vice president and head of ocean freight and China rail, said the avail- ability of cargo information within the supply chain is making it possible to increase consolidation across suppliers, resulting in transportation becoming more efficient. "LCL demand is rising because of smaller, more specific consign- ments, more trade lanes, and greater efficiency. E-commerce also plays a role," he said. "Technology helps to optimize the cargo flow and enable better tracking of timestamps. Furthermore, the better the data, the better the utilization management and the solution design for custom- ers in terms of mixing customer specific consolidation and LCL." Alan Hewitt, commercial director for FSC Oceans, said the UK-based forwarder is also seeing rising demand for LCL shipping, which he Less is more Changing nature of trade increasing demand for less-than-containerload shipments By Greg Knowler A WiseTech choice The latest in a spree of acquisitions heats up competition among TMS soware providers By Eric Johnson 10% Percentage by which US imports of less than one TEU rose in the first quarter. Importing & Exporting | Ports | Carriers | Breakbulk | Global Logistics

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