FedEx Express (FedEx), a subsidiary of FedEx Corp. and one of the world’s largest express transportation companies, has strengthened its network and e-commerce capabilities in preparation for yet another busy holiday season in the Asia Pacific, Middle East and Africa (AMEA) region.
The e-commerce boom accelerated by COVID-19 is expected to continue. Global online spending is estimated to increase by 11% year on year to $910 billion during the upcoming holiday season. In the Asia Pacific, a region that accounts for more than 60% of online retail sales, online shopping has already picked up. For example, China’s biggest online shopping festival – Singles’ Day – is expected to spur further growth of online retail across the rest of the AMEA region. In Southeast Asia, about 40% of e-tailers said festive season sales represent the bulk of their annual sales. In the Middle East and Africa, 22% of consumers are ready to shop online during Black Friday and Cyber Monday.
With the exponential growth of e-commerce and the soaring shipping volumes associated with it, FedEx is expecting the 2021 peak season to meet or exceed the unprecedented 2020 holiday season. Supply chain challenges, including ocean freight, are also adding to the demand for air cargo capacity as businesses replenish stock levels in time for the holiday season. In the AMEA region, the company has taken steps including workforce additions, facility expansions, network optimization, and innovative e-commerce solutions to meet the needs of consumers.
- Added capacity and facilities: FedEx has beefed up its network capacity by adding six new intercontinental flights on high-demand lanes, connecting the Asia Pacific with the United States and Europe. These contribute to the total of 225 weekly flights the company operates in and out of the region, providing reliable and increased connectivity and resilience for the holiday season. FedEx opened a new gateway facility in Clark, the Philippines, in October that will help support the growing e-commerce demand of bulk shipments and large items coming in and out of Asia during the holiday season.
- All out on e-commerce: To empower e-tailers with instant access to FedEx robust e-commerce portfolios and affordable shipping solutions without switching platforms or accounts, FedEx launched FedEx Compatible and Alliance program by teaming up with leading e-commerce platforms across Asia Pacific. The company also introduced a new time-defined shipping solution – FedEx International Connect Plus (FICP). This combines competitive speed with attractive prices to address consumers’ evolving needs for value-for-money international shipping services while ensuring shipments will be delivered within 1 to 5 business days within the region.
- Improved visibility and personalized services: In anticipation of end consumers’ growing focus on the traceability of their holiday items and the increased preference for personalized delivery services, FedEx enhanced its FedEx Delivery Manager, which allows customized delivery options, timings, and locations. E-merchants can offer their customers the ability to track packages, get alerts with the FedEx Mobile app, and check the status of incoming deliveries and outgoing shipments. FedEx also provides flexible delivery offerings such as pick-up or returns within its retail networks.
- Increased Workforce: FedEx Corp and the operating companies plan to hire 90,000 new team members in the United States as part of its efforts to ensure there’s enough manpower to handle the peak surge.
“It’s never too early to plan ahead – shop early and ship early. This is especially true this upcoming holiday season with record-breaking shipping volumes on the horizon. In fact, nearly half (48%) of consumers worldwide plan to start their holiday shopping early this year, including 21% who had already started shopping in September,” said Kawal Preet, president, Asia Pacific, Middle East and Africa (AMEA) region, FedEx Express. “At FedEx, we are gearing up our efforts to help e-tailers win the e-commerce race while navigating the complex supply chain landscape. With our expanded network, improved service reliability and suite of e-commerce solutions, businesses including e-tailers now have the right tools at the right moment to delight their customers through fast, flexible, cost-efficient, and seamless deliveries this festive season.”
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