Freight forwarder and customs broker Flexport International LLC has launched a platform that allows shippers to lower their freight costs through intelligent cargo matching, the company says.
San Francisco-based Flexport said its OceanMatch platform is a data-informed ocean freight consolidation offering that identifies available container space on compatible shipments. That allows shippers to access the benefits of Full Container Load (FCL) freight—such as low prices, fast transit times, and less risk of delay—without needing to fill or pay for a whole container.
According to Flexport, a review of all ocean freight imported into the U.S. in 2018 revealed that FCL containers were on average only 65 percent utilized, meaning that more than one-third of U.S.-bound container space moves across the ocean without cargo.
"The most important goal of Flexport's technology-first approach to freight is that we unlock new opportunities for our customers," Ryan Petersen, CEO and founder of Flexport, said in a release. "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."
In other benefits, 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, Flexport says.
"Shippers have always had to choose between shipping cadence and container utilization," Ram Siddarth, vice president of ocean consolidations at Flexport, said in a release. "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."
Read more about why we created OceanMatch, our newest offering that gives you optimal freight pricing by matching unused space in your container with other Flexport cargo: https://t.co/6f1bUwUuCH pic.twitter.com/5fw13vLwa5— Flexport (@flexport) March 28, 2019