What Is A Modern Forwarder?

What Is A Modern Forwarder?

A relatively new player in the forwarding space has been posting impressive growth numbers.   Over the last three years this firm has grown 15,911% !  They have over a billion dollars in funding, over 1000 employees, and more than 12 offices and warehouses around the world.  


The name of this company is FLEXPORT, and they refer to themselves as a “MODERN FORWARDER”.  Given those impressive growth numbers, we might want to take a minute to think about what it means to be a Modern Forwarder, and why FLEXPORT is using it to describe themselves?


The question of being a Modern Forwarder is not a common question for nost forwarders, but in light of FLEXPORT’S success, it is a very useful question to consider.   In reviewing their success stories, and their recent ebook, “From Chaos to Control:  Optimizing Global Trade with Data,” FLEXPORT describes their view of a Modern Forwarder as one that provides “Transparency and Efficiency” throughout the entire supply chain.  They say “the better the transparency, the better the data, which leads to faster and more informed decision making”.  They accomplish this “by bringing importers and exporters together onto a single digital platform with the logistics companies that serve them,” which creates an operation in which “huge efficiencies in time and cost open up”.


According to FLEXPORT, their description of a Modern Forwarder would include:


  • A single digital platform linking everyone in the supply chain that provides transparency and efficiency….


  • Such a platform produces data that leads to recommendations that can enhance efficiency and lower costs for the end client


  • And in the end, the Modern Forwarder elevates its offerings beyond the cost-effective movement and goods towards supply chain optimization. 


So, I guess this leaves us with two KEY QUESTIONS:


How do we respond to this approach when it’s brought to our clients?


And, what does our definition of MODERN FORWARDER need to be going forward?


GLNK, INC, the owner of THE GLOBALINK and GLOBAL VALUE NETWORKS, will be holding a topic focused meeting in Chicago for its members on November 14 and 15 to address these questions and explore strategic responses.  If you are interested in discussing this important topic with us and our members, and would like more information about this event, we welcome you to contact us at willsiemens@glvnet.com.