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July 9 2018

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16 The Journal of Commerce | July 9 2018 International Maritime A SERIES OF business model shifts by companies in the digital freight forwarding space, as well as estab- lished forwarders setting up their own digital channels, symbolize how nascent this section of the industry remains more than five years after the e-forwarding concept began in earnest. An armada of digital forwarders, forwarding marketplaces, and other niche software providers either aim- ing to arm forwarders with new tools or disintermediate traditional for- warders have emerged in recent years. And that's presenting beneficial cargo owners (BCOs) with a conundrum: There are more potential service options than they have previously had, but also a confusing landscape in which it's unclear whether a startup digital forwarder is more useful than traditional forwarders backed with more modern technology. Adding to the confusion is that some startups in the space have piv- oted to different business models — some by design, some by necessity. A notable recent example is Fleet, an Oregon-based startup that began life in 2015 as a sort of "Yelp for freight," a platform where shippers could rate their experiences with forwarders. That eventually morphed into a marketplace where shippers could solicit quotes and documentation from a group of forwarders posting their services on the Fleet platform. Earlier this year, however, Fleet shuttered its marketplace to become a digital forwarder in the vein of Flexport, iContainers, FreightHub, and Zencargo. Under the new model, Fleet is essentially taking on the role of the forwarder instead of being the conduit for small and medium-sized shippers to connect with forwarders. Fleet is far from the only startup to shift gears. In 2017, Haven moved from providing an international freight rate marketplace to becom- ing a provider of transportation management software. The com- pany said the move was intentional, and that it used its time operating a marketplace to better understand the workflow and online behavior of shippers. UK-based Kontainers made a similar move at the end of 2017, pivoting from a digital forwarding Digital forwarding 2.0 Industry shis from marketplaces to models offering technology to ease customer connections By Eric Johnson Prince Rupert gears for growth Port takes on another expansion project, intensifying the battle for market share By Bill Mongelluzzo LESS THAN A year after completion of a terminal expansion project, the port of Prince Rupert is positioning itself to increase market share in North America's competitive Pacific Northwest region, with another expansion project. The 22-acre expansion of the Fair- view container terminal, announced in conjunction with the JOC Canada Trade Conference on June 19 and scheduled for completion in 2022, will increase the port's annual through- put capacity by 33 percent, to 1.8 mil- lion TEU. It also will ratchet up the battle for market share in its competition with Vancouver, British Columbia, and the Northwest Seaport Alliance of Seattle and Tacoma. Prince Rupert last year increased its regional market share by 0.7 point to 12 percent. Vancouver's share rose 0.4 point to 48.5 percent, and the share of the Northwest Seaport Alliance decreased 1.1 point to 39.5 percent, according to PIERS, a sister product of The Journal of Commerce within IHS Markit. Leading the expansion program will be Shaun Stevenson, the former vice president of trade development and public affairs at the Prince Rupert Port Authority, who was named president and CEO a day after the project was announced, taking over for Interim President and CEO Joe Rektor. Beneficial cargo owners (BCOs) in eastern Canada and the US Midwest should welcome the expansion as a step toward preventing a return of the congestion Prince Rupert experienced last winter. The congestion began last fall when a surge in container volume ran into completion of the previous expansion project. That project increased port capacity to 1.35 million TEU. Container dwell times doubled to six days over the winter because of severe weather and intermodal rail service problems. Canadian National Railway Port of Prince Rupert Importing & Exporting | Ports | Carriers | Breakbulk | Global Logistics

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