Shippers demand efficiency and technology brings that, says Cogoport President Flemming Frost

Digital practices and technology adoption are bringing greater productivity, effectiveness and profitability in the shipping and logistics industry, Cogoport President Flemming Frost told industry leaders yesterday (Wednesday) at a major shipping conference in the Netherlands.

Speaking at the Evofenedex SCM Summit in Zoetermeer, Mr Frost said the time is now ripe for technology to play a much bigger role in shipping, in order to drive efficiencies for all concerned.

Mr Frost, previously Director of Logistics at Tesla and European CEO for Damco, the Maersk Group’s global logistics business, is now a core part of a leadership team spearheading the rapid development of Cogoport – a global online freight marketplace.

Speaking at the Evofenedex SCM Summit, he said: “Traditionally the industry has been marred by opacity, information asymmetry and inefficiency. But now our freight industry is slowly being rethought and disrupted by technology, with conventional processes being transformed and transparency being demanded by customers in the market. Technology, like the Cogoport platform, is helping companies to recast value chains, improve client satisfaction, customer and financial management, and to increase their profitability – which can only be good for the global economy.”

Mr Frost underlined how Cogoport is delivering a digital transformation that is now driving better shipping solutions for its global customer base. “It’s a change for the better – providing clarity and transparency to shippers, while reducing their costs with a simpler, more efficient and effective booking product. Customers themselves say that Cogoport is saving them between 10-15% on every container shipment and these efficiencies will continue to increase as we remove archaic and timely processes,” Mr Flemming said.

The Evofenedex SCM Summit was organised with a theme of – Logistics and platforms: future music or harsh reality? Speakers included representatives from leading industry organisations including: Capgemini, Uber freight, Tradelens, DiManEx, etc. Participants discussed the progress of new platforms and marketplaces, like Cogoport, and their role in today’s supply chain and economy.

However, Mr Frost joined others in warning that industry inefficiencies were being tolerated, unnecessarily, because of a slow rate of adoption of new technology within the past decade.

Only last week a ‘Global Freight Forwarding 2019’ report from Transport Intelligence, warned of the wasted opportunity for shippers. “Markets and technologies have both developed significantly, but the overall landscape is broadly similar to that in the previous 10 years,” said the report, adding: “There appears little drive within the sector to change things fundamentally, and the large number of parties involved in the supply chain has made visibility difficult to achieve.”

Mr Frost warned summit attendees: “The demand for a more efficient shipping industry isn’t going away, technology is here to stay. Those who grasp this opportunity will survive and thrive in the long term. Others who fail to exploit the savings that technology can offer them will wither and struggle to survive.”