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Kuwait’s Agility to invest $100 million over next three years in its digital logistics platform Shipa

Agility, the Kuwait-headquartered global logistics company that is one of the largest of its kind, has announced that it will launch a digital logistics platform Shipa and invest $100 million in it over the next three years.

The platform will enable businesses, entrepreneurs, and consumers, manage their freight, ecommerce, and urban deliveries online.

Agility that provides freight forwarding, transportation, warehousing and supply chain management services to businesses, governments, international institutions and relief agencies worldwide with more than 22,000 employees and 500 offices in 100 countries, obviously has all the industry know-how and resources to make the platform a success. The move comes as a part of company’s digital transformation efforts.

In a notification (H/T: Ali Al-Salim) to Dubai Financial Market where Agility’s share are taraded, the company said, “Agility plans to invest roughly $100 million over coming three years to launch Shipa.com, a digital platform to help small businesses, entrepreneurs and consumers manage their logistics business online and by mobile. The investment in intended to help Agility meet needs of undeserved customer segments and develop digital-first ecommerce, freight, and delivery business.”

Shipa, even though its not pointed out in the statement, has been operational since a year or two at least as some of the app reviews for Shipa Delivery, one of Shipa’s mobile apps, date back to June 2016.

Agility, one of the world’s largest logistics companies, said it will invest $100 million over three years to launch Shipa.com, a digital logistics platform that lets businesses, entrepreneurs and consumers manage their freight, e-commerce, and urban deliveries online.

Agility Chairwoman Henadi Al-Saleh, in a statement, said, “Shipa.com makes life easier through technology, whether you are a small business running your supply chain with a few clicks, or a consumer getting your shopping delivered with a few taps on your phone. Shipa.com makes logistics convenient, jargon-free, trackable, accountable and accessible.”

The platform has three main services:

Shipa Ecommerce that offers integrated freight, fulfillment, delivery and returns solutions across Arabian Gulf and plans to add EU and Africa to its network in the near future. The solutions by Shipa Ecommerce come with easy-to-use digital integration: APIs and web interfaces including checkout integration with customer portals, websites and apps.

Agility earlier this year had hired poached Aramex’s Chief Ecommerce Officer Hassan Mikail to head its eocmmerce funcstion so apparently its him who is leading Shipa Ecommerce as well as he’s listed as a member of leadership team on Shipa’s website.

Shipa Delivery that offers both businesses and consumers on-demand same-day, next-day or cross-border delivery across the Arabian Gulf. Shipa Delivery can be accessed by mobile or directly integrated with its business customers’ systems, and provides solutions to optimize for speed, convenience, and affordability.

Shipa Freight that allows small businesses to get instant and transparent freight quotes, and to book, pay and track ocean and air shipments around the world on any digital or mobile device. Shipa claims that it is industry’s first and most advanced fully integrated online freight service. It is available in 100+ countries.

“Logistics is the backbone of commerce. But it’s complex, and that complexity is disproportionately difficult for small businesses to navigate. Small businesses often lack access to the logistics resources, tools and solutions that larger businesses have,” the Chairwoman noted. “No wonder then, that we interviewed 800 small and medium-sized businesses around the world, we found that 78% wanted to see their logistics move online. Shipa helps close that gap, empowering small businesses to take advantage of the opportunities being created by the global digital economy.”

With Shipa, Agility is taking on both convential logistics players from the region and beyond, and the technology companies like Fetchr, a leading logistics technology startup from the region that’s based in Dubai.

It will be interesting to see what comes out of this. Digital transformation is easier said than done.

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