Amazon in Talks to Acquire Autonomous Vehicle Startup Zoox

| Mike O'Brien

Amazon is in advanced talks to acquire self-driving car startup Zoox as it looks to expand its autonomous vehicle capabilities to address massive delivery costs, according to the Wall Street Journal. It has already invested heavily in autonomous technology, contributing to funding rounds for Aurora Innovation and Rivian Automotive LLC.

6 Ways Fashion Retailers Can Connect with Customers with Stores on Pause

| Jake Chatt

For fashion retailers, the COVID-19 situation presents an assortment of challenges as not only have people’s priorities and needs changed but, for many, shopping for clothing is an inherently in-person activity. Here are 6 ways fashion retailers can connect with customers online while physical shopping is on pause to drive sales.

Amazon Air Could Reach Parity with UPS By 2027 or 2028, Study Finds

| Mike O'Brien

Amazon Air is projected to have 200 cargo jets in its fleet by 2027 or 2028, bringing it close to parity with UPS if the latter doesn’t expand significantly, according to a study from DePaul University. The study said Amazon Air has grown to 42 planes since its launch in 2016, with plans to expand to 70 by 2021, putting it on par with DHL.

FedEx, Microsoft Strike Technology Partnership in Shot at Amazon

| Mike O'Brien

Now that it’s detached itself from Amazon, FedEx has entered into a multiyear agreement with Amazon’s cloud computing rival Microsoft, with the first offering using the latter’s real-time intelligence capabilities to provide FedEx shippers with greater visibility into transit time issues. Other solutions will be announced later this year.

Last Mile Tech Drives the DTC Customer Experience During COVID-19

| May Walter

When DTC brands are able to understand and implement last mile technology providing greater visibility and transparency, they put themselves in a position where they can control the customers’ experience from start to finish, ultimately enhancing it in every way possible. Here are three ways to boost the last-mile experience.

Political Battle Over USPS Future, Fed Bailout Continues as Mail Declines

| Mike O'Brien

While the USPS gets tossed around like a political football and threatens insolvency without more federal aid, the agency continues to report poor results as already lower mail rates have fallen through the floor due to coronavirus. Meantime, Trump ally, donor and fundraiser Louis DeJoy will be the new Postmaster General.

7 Strategies to Help You Reduce Subscription Box Shipping Costs

| Nicole Lee

Parcels are small, but have a big bottom-line impact for subscription box businesses. Whether you’re sending curated boxes, doing replenishment or ecommerce orders, shipping puts pressure on limited transportation budgets. If cost are getting proportionately higher, it’s time to reevaluate your parcel management approach.

Flytrex Begins Backyard Drone Delivery Pilot from a Walmart in ND

| Mike O'Brien

Israeli drone startup Flytrex has begun a pilot program making backyard deliveries from a Walmart in Grand Forks, ND to about a dozen nearby homes, looking to expand the program to further-out properties there in the months ahead while keeping to current FAA restrictions to line-of-sight piloting.

Last Mile Service Providers Seeing Huge Coronavirus Demand Spikes

| Mike O'Brien

Amidst the massive pivot to online during the coronavirus crisis, providers of last mile delivery services are seeing huge growth in demand from various kinds of merchants, as house-bound consumers are ordering away for both essential and nonessential items. Demand is coming from a variety of sources, including stores, SMBs and CPGs.

USPS Asking Congress for $75 Billion to Avoid Liquidity Crisis

| Mike O'Brien

The USPS is asking Congress for $75B to avoid a liquidity crisis this fall, including $25 billion each for a cash infusion, for upgrades and modernization and for unrestricted borrowing authority, according to Government Executive. The USPS had already been in a bad position before the crisis, with even parcel growth falling off.