Amazon’s got a plan, and it seems that they are starting to execute on it. The plan is to take its strategy of becoming a full fledged shipping company to the skies… with the birds.
These last few months have shed significant light on Amazon’s overall goal of becoming an end-to-end, full fledged shipping company. What started with a few pilot projects, such as last-mile delivery with small fleets, one-hour delivery and, most recently, the purchase of Colis Prive’, a French shipping company.
The purchase of Colis was the biggest indicator of Amazon’s intentions, but they were confirmed by a leaked internal document that described a secret program called “Operation Dragonboat,” which laid out a plan to completely disrupt the shipping industry.
And now, an Amazon airport
Rumors have now surfaced that Amazon has been in talks to purchase an Airport in Western Germany. This would make sense, since not too long ago Amazon leased a fleet of Boeing freight planes. The airport would also serve as a European hub for it’s international shipping, and is near a large fulfillment center in Koblenz, Germany.
It also seems that Amazon is growing its hold on each stage of the supply chain, as it has recently announced the expansion of same-day delivery service, Amazon Prime Now, to new markets.
Additionally, Amazon Flex, the company’s on-demand, last-mile delivery service which leverages contracted drivers to deliver packages locally has begun to expand in 2016. The service is what powers Prime Now, and has begun a hiring spree, indicating further growth.
While there is no word on if Amazon actually purchased the airport, the mere fact that they were discussing the possibility is very telling. If, in fact, the rumors are true this would represent a huge step forward towards its stated goal, as per “Operation Dragonboat,” to take on the global shipping industry.
Should incumbents be nervous about Amazon?
Amazon claims, quite fervently, that it has no intentions to take on the big parcel companies. However, their actions indicate otherwise.
The incumbents all have global operations that are on a scale that would be hard for Amazon to reach any time soon, though if any company can do it, it’s Amazon.
It is on the local level – on-demand/same-day delivery, that these companies should stake their claim. Amazon, with its expansion of Prime Now, is positioning itself to own this space. Big shipping companies should take note. Investing in the right technology to enable same-day delivery, while providing customers with the kind of visibility they now expect, is the best bet.
Bringg is a platform for enterprises to manage on-demand and last-mile deliveries, empowering enterprises and 3PLs in more than 50 countries. Bringg provides capabilities to all businesses that were previously only available to companies like Amazon and Uber by enabling them to enrich their existing infrastructure.