Date: 04.07.2023

Service more important than assets

Despite continuous efforts by air and sea carriers to increase direct shipper relationships beyond the largest volume (BCO) contracts, freight forwarders still control the vast majority of air freight and last month NVO’s like Metro handled over half of FCL’s sailing from Asia, suggesting that importers are prioritising service over assets.

The COVID19 pandemic and the disruption it generated throughout sea freight supply chains bought into focus the issues that really matter to shippers, because price is irrelevant if there is no reliability or consistency of service.

Using a shipping line and even the largest carrier, that control ships, trucks, warehouses and other assets was no guarantee that  cargo would be lifted, or shipped, with even the biggest volume shippers having their containers rolled and contracted space allocations ignored.

Given the critical importance of their supply chains, shippers are typically adept at selecting the right solutions for their needs, when they focus on solutions and service capability above assets and Metro’s sole focus is providing consistently high-quality solutions with proprietary technology and embedded service culture.

We leverage the outstanding relationships we have built with all the leading air and sea carriers over 40+ years and shippers’ appreciation of the value that NVO’s like us can bring is growing, with the percentage of Asia import trade handled by NVOs versus direct shipper-carrier contracts increasing to 54%, an uptick of 8% in two years. 

Cash-rich after the pandemic’s sky-high freight rates, carriers have been extending capabilities from their core asset-based position, but freight industry history is replete with attempts by shipping lines to extend operations up-stream and down-stream, usually with little or no success.

We negotiate long-term volume and price contracts with airlines and shipping lines across all three alliances to secure space and rates, for the widest selection of NVO services.

EMAIL our Chief Commercial Officer, Andy Smith to learn about our NVO solutions, customer commitment and supply chain technology.