Solid read from Bloomberg on the potential of Amazon’s plans to evolve their delivery process, drive costs down from their network of providers and of course … grow their own network to deliver predictably. It’s unclear where the end game might lead, but cost pressures are going to certainly put the sting on UPS and FedEx and that’s just in the US.
In June, Deutsche Bank released a report predicting that Amazon will eventually have a global shipping operation capable of moving goods directly from factories in China to customers in the U.S. and Europe, using not just 767s and container ships, but also self-driving trucks and drones. The report also said Amazon has a patent for “anticipatory package shipping” technology, which is just what it sounds like: When some Prime subscriber buys more deodorant, Amazon already has the box standing by, ready to label and ship. “It’s just one giant math exercise,” Deutsche Bank wrote, adding that Amazon has “hundreds of Ph.D. mathematicians” who spend their days optimizing logistics.
Others believe that Amazon will make a business out of its delivery network, as it did with Amazon Web Services, thereby challenging the world’s leading shipping companies. “I fully expect Amazon to build out a logistics supply chain that others can use,” says John Rossman, a former Amazon executive who’s now a managing director at the restructuring firm Alvarez & Marsal. “Over the next five years? I doubt it. Over 10 or 15 years? Oh yeah.”