3PL gap is closing at the top

In a world that is becoming increasingly commoditized, brand recognition is particularly important to the third-party logistics (3PL) industry, observes Armstrong & Associates.

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In a world that is becoming increasingly commoditized, brand recognition is particularly important to the third-party logistics (3PL) industry, observes Armstrong & Associates. The prominent consultancy also notes that a business that relies on reputation, quality, solutions, and scalability must never lose touch with its shippers as it grows its top line of revenue. 

Since 2002, Armstrong & Associates has surveyed 3PL managers and shippers to identify the most recognizable brands in third-party logistics. 

Armstrong & Associates Chairman Richard Armstrong announced the release of the 2018 Top 20 3PL brand recognition report last month at the company’s 3PL Value Creation North America Summit.

As reported in Logistics Management, DHL Supply Chain & Global Forwarding once again topped the list. 

“But when it comes to brand strength, the gap between the top three is closing. XPO Logistics and C.H. Robinson are quickly catching up,” said Armstrong. 

XPO’s 2015 merger with Menlo has helped boost its brand strength. In 2013, Menlo placed seventh on the list, while XPO didn’t break the top 20. Meanwhile, C.H. Robinson’s brand strength has climbed steadily over the last decade.

“The 3PL market has seen excellent growth in the last two years,” Armstrong added, noting that macroeconomic trends, combined with intensifying supply chain complexity, means demand for 3PLs is increasing. 

The market grew 10.5% in 2017 to $184.3 billion, and it’s on track to exceed $200 billion in revenue in 2019. Conditions are ideal for winning new business, even as 3PL competition increases. 

Readers seeking data on the most common sales processes and contract lengths will profit by studying this report next year before making any long term plans.


About the Author

Patrick Burnson, Executive Editor
Patrick Burnson is executive editor for Logistics Management and Supply Chain Management Review magazines and web sites. Patrick is a widely-published writer and editor who has spent most of his career covering international trade, global logistics, and supply chain management. He lives and works in San Francisco, providing readers with a Pacific Rim perspective on industry trends and forecasts. You can reach him directly at [ protected]

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