Rob Martinez

Rob Martinez

Rob Martinez is the CEO of Shipware LLC, a professional services firm that transforms businesses through intelligent distribution solutions and strategies. Rob has helped some of the world’s most recognizable brands reduce parcel shipping costs an average of 25 percent through contract negotiations, rate benchmarking, modal optimization, invoice audit and other savings vehicles. A cum laude graduate of UCLA, Rob has 20 years of transportation industry experience, including executive positions at DHL and Stamps.com, in addition to his work as an outside consultant since 2001.

UPS Begins Preparations for a Freight Strike

I had the following email forwarded to me yesterday from a UPS Freight customer. And I have to say, I can’t believe UPS is doing this! The news starts at paragraph three … UPS Freight will not be picking up freight as the freight contract with the Teamsters gets close to the vote. Essentially, UPS will not be…

Teamsters-UPS Have Tenuous Agreement in Place: What it Means for Retailers

As most of the industry is aware, the most recent five-year UPS/Teamsters National Labor Agreement expired in July. However, the parties extended and have been operating under the same agreement as they negotiated a settlement. In July, UPS and the Teamsters announced they had reached a tentative “handshake” deal for both Freight (LTL) as well…

FedEx Announces Significant Rate Increases

On Monday, FedEx modified its Express and Ground fuel surcharge rates, and created new indexes for International Export and Imports. These changes mean significant rate increases for nearly all FedEx shippers. Shippers shouldn't confuse this rate change with the weekly, normal fluctuation in fuel surcharge percentages based on market prices (as published by the Department…

Small Parcel Shippers Beware: UPS Imposes Series of Intra-Year Rate Hikes

Even though the potential strike at UPS hasn’t yet been averted (the current labor agreement is set to expire July 31, and the two parties haven't ratified a tentative agreement), the company has decided that now is a good time to impose intra-year rate hikes. UPS already changed its fuel surcharge tables for air export…

Analyzing the FedEx, UPS 2017 Holiday Surcharge Increases

Both FedEx and UPS have announced new, temporary holiday surcharges that will impact shipping costs for e-commerce businesses this holiday season. UPS In June, UPS announced a new peak season charge applicable during selected weeks in November and December 2017 for U.S. Residential, Large Packages and Packages Over Maximum Limits. The increase means that every…

FedEx Announces 2017 General Rate Increase, Other Changes

In a somewhat surprising move to industry analysts, FedEx has announced shipping rate and surcharge changes for 2017 that do not match those announced Sept. 1 by rival UPS. FedEx Express, FedEx Ground and FedEx Freight, subsidiaries of FedEx Corp., will increase shipping rates effective Jan. 2, 2017 as follows: FedEx Express will increase shipping…

China Grants Unconditional Approval of FedEx, TNT Express Merger

In its ongoing efforts to merge, FedEx and TNT Express jointly announced last Friday the unconditional approval of the Ministry of Commerce People’s Republic of China. After winning approvals in the United States (November 2015), EU (January 2016) and Brazil (February 2016), China was the last major regulatory hurdle for FedEx to gain in its…

UPS Announces 2016 General Rate Increase

Effective Dec. 28, 2015, UPS Ground rates and accessorial charges will increase by an average net 4.9 percent. UPS Air and International services and accessorials, including UPS Air Freight rates within and between the U.S., Canada and Puerto Rico, will increase an average net 5.2 percent. UPS Freight rates will increase an average net of…

Oops … They Did it Again! FedEx Increases Fuel Surcharges On All Products

On the heels of a fuel surcharge adjustment just this past February, FedEx is once again adjusting its fuel surcharge index nine months later. Effective Nov. 2, 2015, fuel surcharges for FedEx Express and FedEx Ground will change resulting in Express/International increases of 1.5 percent to 1.75 percent, and Ground increases of .5 percent to…

FedEx Announces 2016 General Rate Increase and Other Changes

FedEx Express, FedEx Ground and FedEx Freight, subsidiaries of FedEx Corp., will increase shipping rates effective Jan. 4, 2016 as follows: FedEx Express will increase shipping rates by an average of 4.9 percent for U.S. domestic, U.S. export and U.S. import services. FedEx Ground and FedEx Home Delivery will increase shipping rates by an average…

Impact of UPS and FedEx Dimensional Pricing Changes

In my observation, the vast majority of volume parcel shippers have tried to mitigate the impact of the 2015 dimensional pricing changes through a number of strategies. They include the following: carrier contract negotiations; diverting freight to regional carriers and the U.S. Postal Service that might offer higher DIM divisors and thresholds than the national…

Same-Day, Crowdsourced Delivery Options to Penetrate, Not Disrupt Next-Day Models

If “crowdsourcing” companies like Deliv, Uber, Roadie and Lyft offer merchants pricing that's similar to UPS and FedEx, or if retailers subsidize and price same-day shipping costs in line with standard shipping, I anticipate market adoption especially for younger, more affluent consumers living in major metropolitan areas. However, initial announcements are that UberRUSH will charge…

Delivering a Profit

In light of rising costs for parcel delivery services, what are the best practices that e-commerce companies reliant on the parcel providers can employ? Consider the following

FedEx SmartPost to Raise Rates Again?

While FedEx SmartPost hasn't made any public announcements as of this publication, select customers have received written notifications of a price change effective April 27, 2015. Early indications are that FedEx intends to increase SmartPost rates by 8.3 percent.