It’s bad out there folks. There’s a shortage of everything from soda to chicken tenders. And it’s all because companies cant get their hands on what’s needed to make goods, or transport them once they’re made.
Amazon has taken matters into its own hands, as CNBC News reports the online retail giant has begun making its own shipping containers and chartering its own ships.
The company has been doing this since at least 2018, but now that the situation is considerably more difficult, they’re ahead of the game. Its port waiting times for its ships are a couple of days compared to others. From CNBC:
Los Angeles, there’s 79 vessels sitting out there up to 45 days waiting to come into the harbor,” ocean freight analyst Steve Ferreira told CNBC in November. “Amazon’s latest venture that I’ve been tracking in the last two days, it waited two days in the harbor.
To get around a shortage of shipping containers, the company has been getting its own, directly from China. Estimates put the number of Amazon owned and manufactured containers at 5,000 to 10,000. The company also charters its own ships, something the company isn’t alone in doing. For high-margin goods, aka goods that will make the company a lot of money, it avoids ships entirely. These goods take to the air in chartered plans to get them across the world much faster.
For some of the highest-margin goods, Amazon is avoiding ports altogether by reportedly leasing at least ten long-haul planes that can get smaller amounts of cargo directly from China to the U.S. much faster. One of the converted Boeing 777 planes can carry 220,000 pounds of cargo.
With seemingly no end in sight to global supply chain issues, Amazon may be on the hook to spend more than the $60 billion it spent last year to get goods to consumers.