UK supply chains set to benefit from C.H. Robinson’s $1bn global tech investment


This article is brought to you by Retail Technology Review: UK supply chains set to benefit from C.H. Robinson’s $1bn global tech investment.

UK supply chains are set to benefit from C.H. Robinson’s $1bn global investment in technology which will help shape the future of the country’s logistics ecosystem.

Logistics platform provider, C.H. Robinson, currently works with more than 1,000 data scientists, engineers and developers. Its pledge to further invest in technology will grow its global talents with teams harnessing data to address some of the most complex logistics problems and minimise inefficiencies of global supply chains.

Dave Fraas, director of software engineering at C.H. Robinson Europe, said: “For too long, companies have relied on historical data to predict how they should operate. However, what happened just a year ago, or even a few months ago isn’t the same today. For example, existing historical models would not have predicted the explosion in e-commerce we’ve witnessed over the past couple of years. The pandemic called into question how much faith we should put in historical data, highlighted the urgent need for innovation in the supply chain and placed a greater reliance on the likes of AI and the Internet of Things to help predict the unpredictable.”

With ongoing demand on the rise, removing inefficiencies has never been so important. Fraas continues: “If we think about road transport, truck transport alone accounts for around 25 per cent of global transport energy use and in Europe, a quarter of containers are empty. C.H. Robinson moves the most full truckloads of freight in the world and using our industry-leading technology, we can effectively match supply and demand more closely - every empty mile we remove is incremental capacity we add in to the supply chain to help the flow of goods.

“Our commitment to invest such a staggering sum will put C.H. Robinson at the forefront of technological developments in the UK and on a global scale, too.”

C.H. Robinson has made major technological strides over recent times. At its Tech Centre in Warsaw, it develops automated processes on a scale not seen anywhere else in the world. Aimed at streamlining the process between the customer and carrier, its automated systems almost perfectly match customers’ volume demands and pricing requirements with carriers’ capabilities, providing both parties with greater visibility and flexibility.

It has also launched a new technology centre in Cork to further deliver customised solutions for shippers and carriers with the industry’s premier technology built by and for supply chain experts. The company plans to recruit a significant number of technology professionals in the next three years to bring those efforts to life.

C.H. Robinson also has an alliance with the Microsoft Corporation which combines the power of its Navisphere platform with the multinational technology company’s Azure cloud platform and Internet of Things. It accelerated innovation by helping to create logistics solutions that support the need for enhanced real-time insights and visibility, incorporating machine learning and artificial intelligence to support predictive analytics, IoT device monitoring for greater intelligence on products whilst in transit, premier data security and increased application speed. 

C.H. Robinson’s customer-base in the UK includes household global brands as well as some of the biggest industry and manufacturing firms.

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