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Domestic Imports Still Lagging Pre-Pandemic Levels

| Mike O'Brien

Domestic imports logged a 7.2% month-on-month increase in January, much higher than expected based on figures from the past six years, according to U.S. Census data as analyzed by global logistics and supply chain firm Descartes, yet still lagged behind pre-pandemic levels by a small margin. The NRF near-term outlook was less rosy.

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AxleHire Handling Next-Day Delivery from Seko Facilities

| Mike O'Brien

AxleHire, a startup last-mile logistics provider, has partnered with major 3PL and freight forwarder Seko Logistics to enable next-day deliveries directly from Seko facilities, eliminating middle-mile linehauls between hubs, saving time and money for shippers.

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UPS Exceeds Q4 Income Goal, Falls Short on Revenue

| Mike O'Brien

UPS reported fourth-quarter revenue that fell short of expectations but earnings ahead of the consensus, while the outlook for 2023 appears challenged and the company is in margin protection mode against falling volumes and other volatility. And CEO Carol Tome optimistically predicted a “win, win, win” outcome with the Teamsters.

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Shippo First with FedEx Master Platform Account

| Mike O'Brien

Shipping software provider Shippo has become the first company of its kind to have a direct platform account with FedEx through a new agreement, meaning shippers can access discounted FedEx rates directly through Shippo for two of the carrier’s economy offerings.

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Speed Commerce Reassembles Team from Rakuten Super Logistics

| Mike O'Brien

Five executives who departed Rakuten Super Logistics after the Japanese parent company sold the assets in 2022 to FirstMile owner Devin Johnson have now found a home at Speed Commerce, which finds itself in expansion mode, with a focus on mid-market ecommerce firms.

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Hestia Proposes 7 New Pitney Bowes Directors, Setting Up Proxy Fight

| Mike O'Brien

Activist investor Hestia Capital has proposed a majority slate of seven directors to replace current board members at Pitney Bowes, citing poor performance and what it termed strategic missteps over the past decade, with the company responding that Hestia is not interested in a good faith discussion.

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Shipium Looks to Replicate Amazon Experience

| Mike O'Brien

Shipium co-founder Jason Murray is all about replicating an Amazon-like experience for shippers, having spent 20 years there helping shape its logistics and fulfillment technology, and now uses stochastic data science and predictive modeling to deliver better SLAs and cost savings.

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FedEx Ground Cuts Back Sunday Delivery

| Mike O'Brien

FedEx Ground plans to cut back Sunday delivery from 80% U.S. coverage to 50% starting in March, as it faces lower volume and the high cost of service on a light day. The company initially cut back Ground service on Sunday to 50% coverage from 95% in August, citing a focus on “improving efficiency and reducing costs,”

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Major Parcel Carriers Perform Well During Peak

| Mike O'Brien

The three major parcel carriers had a decent peak holiday season in terms of on-time performance, with service levels comparable to 2019, according to ShipMatrix, not surprising as volumes were lighter even though holiday sales increased, as many shoppers returned to stores. FedEx saw a significant improvement over its 2021 showing.