Express logistics has been experiencing steady growth of turnovers, volumes, and profits for several years. It is mainly influenced by the global development of e-commerce, which is constantly growing and transforming the way of shopping around the world poses considerable development potential for the future. Logistics benefits from this boom and e-commerce companies are well aware of its importance for their own expansion and they are using all forms of cooperation.
Large global online stores do not like to be too dependent on external suppliers. That is why they are looking for their own ways to obtain the necessary logistics services. Some of them set up their own logistics companies to provide logistics for their warehouses and sometimes their own distribution too.
A good case is Chinese internet giant Alibaba, who has announced a massive investment in logistics in recent days. In the next five years, it will invest $ 15.12 billion in this sector to build a global logistics network and target new markets around the world. In this context, it should be noted that while the development of Internet commerce is more dynamic in the United States than in Europe, both regions remain behind for what is happening in China and throughout Asia.
The new Alibaba announcement of extensive investment in logistics fits into the overall trend that is already being felt: large e-commerce players are increasingly trying to control and manage their logistics, either by building or purchasing logistics firms or by creating a logistics alliance, which they can control and manage. According to CEO Alibaba, Daniel Zhang, a significant part of the investment will be directed to Cainiao Smart Logistics Network, an Alibaba-based logistics corporation in which the new investment will increase Alibaba’s stake to majority.
This trend will undoubtedly continue especially with global online marketers such as Alibaba, Amazon, and Walmart. However, it is a question, whether and to what extent it will appear in smaller, regional e-commerce companies and how global express operators such as DHL will be affected. They will have to respond to the situation possibly removing certain volumes of shipment and threatening their business in the future. Anyway, this is a field with high growth potential and we can expect more than interesting – and perhaps even dramatic – development in the coming years.
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