UPS is continuing to push for increased efficiency through hub automation projects and its ORION route optimization system. The company reported Q2 revenue growth of 3.8% to $14.63 billion, with profit up 3.2% to $1.27 billion. Its ecommerce business is on pace to grow faster than expected through the end of the year, officials said, based on strength in U.S. consumer spending.
As it continues to hit roadblocks in the U.S., Amazon has announced a partnership with the UK government to experiment with drone delivery of small parcels through its Amazon Prime Air unit. Meantime 7-11 has beaten Amazon to the punch, delivering Slurpees and other essential items to a family in Reno, NV in the first U.S. commercial drone delivery.
Following on the heels of FedEx’s move earlier this year, UPS plans to update its fee structure for larger parcels, decreasing the size of items that incur an extra $10.50 handling charge. Under the new rule, packages with a long side of 48″ or more will be subject to the charge as of June 6. The previous threshold was 60″.
Continuing its relentless push into logistics to shore up carrier network capacity issues, Amazon has struck a deal with major air transport firm Atlas Air of Purchase, NY, leasing 20 of its Boeing 767-300 jets and taking up to a 30% stake in the company. Atlas is also a supplier of transport planes to UPS.