In the summer of 1992, my parents decided I was too young to go to a Guns n’ Roses / Metallica concert alone. They also decided they did not like either band, and would not be joining me. I was lucky enough to grow up about 1.5 miles from what is now Gillette Stadium in Foxboro, so I sat on my front steps and could hear some of the show. While this was somewhat enjoyable, it didn’t come close to the excitement of actually attending. When Guns n’ Roses essentially broke up in 1997, I figured I would never see them in concert. I considered seeing them about a decade ago when Axl Rose toured with a bunch of musicians and dubbed them “Guns n Roses,” but I decided against it. When the band (or at least Axl, Slash, Duff, and Dizzy) announced a reunion tour, I knew I had to go. So this past Tuesday night, I went to Gillette Stadium to see the show. And it did not disappoint. I would rank it as one of my top 5 shows of all time, probably top 3. They brought the energy and their greatest hits. So now I can cross “seeing Guns n’ Roses” off my list.
And now, on to the news.
- UPS in the news:
- New standards developed to calculate carbon footprints in the supply chain
- Goldman Sachs leads $10M investment in Brazilian trucking startup CargoX
- Amazon secures paten on “docking station” for delivery drones
- National fuel prices see 1.2-cent drop in most recent week
- Cass Freight Index Report sees sequential gains in June
UPS is considering joining its competition, FedEx and the USPS, and rolling out Saturday deliveries. The initial test of the program will run in Atlanta, Philadelphia, and Los Angeles, and will begin sometime this summer. After the initial tests are complete, the company will evaluate whether the volume of shipments justifies the cost. The big driver behind the move is the influx of e-commerce orders that customers prefer to have delivered on the weekends. UPS estimates that more than half of its deliveries will be home deliveries by 2019, so the company needs to make some shifts to appease its customers.
Additionally, UPS is expanding its Worldwide Express service to three new countries: Myanmar, Albania, and the Dominican Republic. The service provides customers with guaranteed delivery on the next possible business day by 10:30 a.m., 12 noon, or 2 p.m., based on destination. With the addition of these three countries, this service is now available in 117 countries and territories, making up roughly 95% of global GDP and 96% of real imports.
A universal method for calculating the carbon footprint of logistics supply chains has been introduced by the Global Logistics Emissions Council (GLEC). The measurement will combine existing methodologies into one framework, thus allowing for emissions to be consistently calculated across a range of transport methods, including road, rail, and shipping. The goal is the widespread adoption of the new standard in green freight programs, carbon footprint calculation tools, and other related standards. This is not overly surprising news given the steps taken by many companies to make their supply chains more environmentally friendly and sustainable.
CargoX, a Brazilian startup that has been described as “Uber for trucks,” is announcing that it has raised $10 million in Series B funding. The company works to connect businesses that need to ship freight with truckers who have excess capacity. Brazil reportedly has an excess of between 300,000 and 350,000 vehicles, with trucks running empty 40% of the time. The goal of CargoX is to reduce the number of empty trucks on the highway, increasing revenue for truckers and reducing costs for freight owners. CargoX currently has a network of about 150,000 trucks.
Amazon has been awarded a patent for “docking stations” for its delivery drones that will be built on tall structures such as lampposts or churches and allow the unmanned machines to recharge and pick up packages. However, with the FAA regulations in place, Amazon’s use of drones will be limited. That isn’t stopping the company from continuing to invest in drone research. The latest patent describes docking stations which could be installed on cell towers, church steeples, office buildings, electric poles, and generally tall structures. It would allow a drone to land, avoid bad weather, recharge or refuel, and drop off and pick up packages.
With a 1.2-cent decrease during the week ending July 18, diesel prices across the United States have dropped for the third week in a row, according to the Department of Energy’s weekly report. The slight drop in price brings the US’ average for a gallon of on-highway diesel to $2.402. Prices rose in just one region – the Gulf Coast – by only one-tenth of a cent. The biggest drop in price came in the West Coast less California region, where prices dropped 2.7 cents. The nation’s most expensive diesel can be found in California at $2.78 per gallon, followed by the West Coast less California region at $2.569 per gallon. The cheapest fuel can be found in the Gulf Coast region at $2.262 per gallon, followed by the Lower Atlantic region at $2.332 per gallon.
And finally, both freight shipments and expenditures in June saw sequential gains, according to data in the June edition of the Cass Freight Index Report issued by Cass Information Systems today. June shipments were up 1.7% at 1.11 compared to May on the heels of a 1.3% increase from April to May, and they were down 4.3% annually, which is an improvement compared to the 5.8% annual decline in May. Shipments were 7.6% below June 2014 levels.
That’s all for this week. Enjoy the weekend, and the song of the week, Paradise City by Guns n’ Roses.