Urban logistics – From atomization to massification

by Roland Berger

Spurred on by the Covid-19 pandemic, consumers increasingly expect ordered items to be delivered as fast as possible and at affordable prices. Convenience is becoming the order of the day. Global e-commerce sales have been booming and the market is expected to continue growing around 9% annually over the coming years. To meet these demands, logistics operators have “atomized” deliveries (i.e., fulfilling orders in fragments), which in addition to increasing complexities and costs, has also led to an overtaxed urban infrastructure and rising emissions. A sustained collaboration between all involved stakeholders – from logistics operators to infrastructure providers and more – may be the only way to relieve the pressure placed on city infrastructures while ensuring that customer demands are met in a timely yet sustainable manner.

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