F3: Future of Freight Festival: What happened in 2022 inside the Logistics Industry and Perspectives for the Coming Year  
Employee Training
Byadmin-hubtek |
16 November, 2022 |

Hubtek has been recognized by FreigthWaves as Best in Show for the sixth consecutive time with our TABi Connect demo, one of the most innovative automation platforms for companies in the logistics and transportation industry, at the F3: Future of Freight Festival.

2022 was a year that brought many unexpected situations around the world, like inflation, dropping rates, a recession, etc. The logistics industry has needed resilience in navigating these issues and has had to implement new strategies to help relieve these pains. This year, at the F3: Future of Freight Festival in Tennessee, different experts discussed the future of the industry and talked about their experiences related to the situations that affected it this year.  

One of the experts, Nathan Strang, talked about inventories and how importers could or could not take advantage of the lower spot rates.  Specifically, he said, “Importers that do need to bring in inventory are stuck behind those other importers that don’t; and that’s forcing them into modes that they don’t necessarily want. So, they might not be able to take quite as much advantage of those lower spot rates because they must use a premium service.  They have to use an expedited service, they must use transload instead of rail, maybe air instead of ocean, if they’re critical to get to market”. 

Nathan shared his perspective on the benefits of having a small business in this industry.  He stated that, “The positive side is, if you are a small business and you’re competing with some of these larger importers, they brought their stock in at a much higher cost level. They’ve imported it at a much higher freight rate, it’s been sitting in a warehouse or in a container and it’s continuing to accrue costs. And you’re seeing that with the inflationary pressures. So even though spending has gone down and importing has come down, prices have remained elevated because all of these goods are incurring costs.” 

He also talked about the contract rates and how they’ve changed since 2021.  “They became more popular as the rates were rising, where you see these two-year, three-year contracts in the market. It doesn’t present a large portion of the business.  Some of those contracts also come with more guarantees for more spot space. So, if you agree to stay on this contract, then you have more access to spot. So, there are advantages of shipping at those higher rates, if you balance it across your book of business.” 

The experts also discussed the future, and how they are expecting a more normal season in 2023, but that it will be important to evaluate what the industry is like on Black Friday and Christmas, because these events are critical, and can give powerful insights for predicting how the market is going to behave in the first months of 2023.  

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