Shifting airfreight landscape sees smaller players prosper, logistics marketplace reveals

Fri 16 Oct 2020
Posted by: Noelle McElhatton
Trade News

Data from freight marketplace Cargobase has shown that smaller forwarders are winning a greater share of airfreight volumes. 

The top 25 forwarders only won 30% of airfreight sold on the platform in Q2, down from 53% in Q1, according to the spot market.

Automated quoting

Cargobase CEO and founder Wiebe Helder argued that “the lack of automated quoting with the top forwarders is costing them heavily and, in consequence, benefiting the smaller players”.

The Singapore-based logistics platform has seen transactions grow by 240% with revenue up 273% since last year as companies have reacted to supply chain vulnerability during the pandemic.

Helder told The Loadstar that smaller forwarders tended to be more centrally organised, allowing them to act faster and integrate more easily with external systems.

Need for comparison

“Most of the top 25’s automation is focused on pre-agreed business, or with their own customer-facing platforms,” he added. “But the latter doesn’t allow comparison with other freight forwarders.”

Helder argued that shippers and manufacturers either can’t get, or can’t rely on, agreed long-term rates anymore, due to changes in capacity.

“The Covid-19 pandemic has dramatically increased rates and transit times. In May, Cargobase observed airfreight quotes between China and the US fluctuating between U$3 and $30 per kg,” he said.

“These disruptions in the supply chain have forced shippers to procure freight services on-the-spot, at high cost, while keeping an eye out for the next most cost-effective solution.”