I find it fascinating how far the tentacles of digital disruption are reaching now. Earlier this year I did a digital leadership workshop with a group of senior leaders from the logistics side of a global manufacturing business. I don't claim to be an expert in supply chain or logistics, but it was clear from the session how aware the delegates were of the potential for both digital enablement and digital disruption. And (as so often seems to happen now) suddenly I seem to be reading about it everywhere.
I mentioned in my post about subscription models about how Amazon is investing in creating an unprecedented logistics network that includes localised distribution centres, experimentation around last mile delivery, shipping for other retailers and even a new fleet of Prime Air jets, all of which is not coming cheap but represents another sizeable opportunity and industry to disrupt. Already, companies like Fedex are under attack from a number of digitally empowered startups (as the CB Insights graphic above shows). And then I see this video about the first ever shipment (40,000+ cans of Budweiser delivered 120 miles) by a self-driving truck which is quite something.
This particular delivery was conducted by Otto, an autonomous vehicle startup that Uber bought for $700m and which has now become UberFreight, an entirely new proposition that takes their software facilitated model into the freight market. It's far from the most obvious sector for digital disruption but I can't help but feel that this is one industry that is going to see a huge amount of change in a short space of time.