Supply Chain Darlings – 6 Supply Chains the Industry Has Obsessed Over - #2, Uber
‘Darling Supply Chains’ – the companies that tend to dominate the headlines of the supply chain world every-so-often for their innovative thinking, and re-imagination of the industry. Here’s part 5 in our series.
eft is going to attempt to chronicle ‘Darling Supply Chains’ – you know, the companies that tend to dominate the headlines of the supply chain world every-so-often for their innovative thinking, and re-imagination of the industry. The idea behind doing this is to revisit some of the reasons why supply chains have grabbed headlines and to imagine what companies might be gracing headlines over the next decade. Over the last 5 weeks, we’ve been releasing articles looking at 5 supply chains that have grabbed the headlines in the supply chain world over the last decade or so, and arguably changed the industry for good. Next week we’ll be releasing the last supply chain that’s been on our radar and so invite you to join the discussion: @eyefortransport. We’ll be using the hashtag - #SupplyChainDarling to help facilitate the debate on each!
1) October 25
Uber turned the 400 year-old taxi service on its head, creating a lot of enemies (and customers) on its meteoric rise. From a logistics perspective though, it opened up a whole new world of possibilities for deliveries and delivery margins. By connecting the consumer to a network of drivers using little more than software, a smartphone and the principles of crowdsourcing, Uber is able to disintermediate the transportation of people and goods. Effectively, what you have is a software company that connects a consumer directly to a qualified person with a car eliminating the need of a call center, broker, control tower, etc. that you might have at more traditional transportation companies. Using crowdsourced reviews of both users and drivers, the company is also able to maintain a relatively high quality of service. In a Bezzosian style, the company has started expanding its business model now including its own experimental corner store featuring 100 products (Bezos started with 20) delivered to your door at no mark-up. Will it succeed? It’s already up against some stiff competition – Google Express, but the company itself has certainly taken over supply chain and logistics headlines this year, and has helped spearhead the logistics-tech trend. From Uber delivery to the Uber store, be prepared for the next innovation in logistics from this side of the industry.
Why did Uber dominate our supply chain headlines?
1) It reimagined distribution networks, especially in urban environments
2) it connected the consumer directly to logistics – and I mean literally with the driver of the logistics
3) it dared to go where others hadn’t succeeded – a profitable, affordable business model for ultra-fast urban logistics