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Flexport, SF Express join forces

Chai Hua in Shenzhen | Updated: 2019-08-13 19:55
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Cargo is loaded onto a flight of SF Express Co Ltd in Shenzhen, Guangdong province. [Photo/China News Service]

San Francisco-based freight forwarder Flexport and China's leading courier SF Express announced on Tuesday they would launch integrated logistics solutions, aiming to meet China's growing demand for more efficient cross-border cargo delivery services.

Flexport stated the two parties have released a jointly produced website which connects their data, provides real-time status checks for goods, automatically processes data and conducts structured analysis.

Henry Ko, managing director of Flexport Asia, said international logistics companies in China — mostly service manufacturers — used to win by quantity, but as e-commerce trading is booming in the country and global economic development is constantly changing, the needs of many rising middle- and small-sized exporters are evolving.

He found the volume of their products is not large but they need to respond to market changes rapidly. Despite this rapid change, technologies adopted in the freight forwarding industry are still the same as 20 to 30 years ago and fail to provide a satisfactory experience.

"It has become a sticking point," he said. In addition, many new high-tech startups in China tend to concentrate on technology development, so they need a highly efficient system for cargo transportation and delivery.

Established in 2013, Flexport doubled its revenue to nearly $500 million last year and has expanded to about 10,000 clients and suppliers in 109 countries. In February, SF Express invested $100 million to Flexport in a fundraising led by SoftBank Vision Fund.

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