A few days back, I stumbled on a Ted-Ed video (link) about how Malcom Mclean shaped the modern world.
In the great depression in the ’30s, Malcom Mclean was a 24-year-old truck driver. He got a job taking cotton bales from Fayetteville, NC, all the way to the pier in Hoboken, NJ, for shipping overseas. While he was happy for the work, he got bored out of his mind sitting and waiting and waiting on the docks as the workers and stevedores muscled crates and bundles of the other trucks aboard the ship and placed them in a designated position in the hull. It was slow and error-prone.
Malcom came up with the idea of containerisation – taking the entire trailer on to the ship instead of boxes, bundles, and crates. Malcom was 24 when he had the idea and 40 before it materialised into a new trailer design and a ship design. Containerisation was born, created the possibility of moving goods cheaply, created a global marketplace and transformed the modern global economy. As Sir Harold Evans describes in the video – it was the beginning of an era, shrinking our world and enlarging our choice [or products available locally]. Today, container shipping moves 95% of all goods across the globe.
Malcom was ridiculed for his ideas about shipping, but he found an enterprising investor. We are also generating new ideas with our employees and customers and completing the vision digitally. Today, Saksoft and DreamOrbit are helping the Shippers, Carriers, 3PLs and Port operators. We co-created a marketplace for shippers and carriers to meet and exchange quotes for truckload, less-than-truckload, intermodal dispatches, refrigerated shipping, satellite-tracked reefer boxes, etc. We helped create a transport management system to cover air, ocean or land; and made tools to select carriers, board them (pun unintended), and monitor them. We created 3PL e-fulfilment tools and vehicle/fleet management systems with real-time shipment tracking with IoT, geo-fencing and more. We also created tools to manage inventory, monitor compliance and simplify insurance.
We hope to continue this legacy of transformation when the logistics reach the stars and dream to move goods across orbits enabling an astral economy and further expanding our choice.