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GSCW chat: Automating the middle and final miles for retailers

‘You need to make sure that if you have a transportation asset … you’re going to be able to utilize it’

FreightWaves' Jack Daleo (left); Gatik's Sam Saad (right)

FIRESIDE CHAT TOPIC: Opportunities for automation abound over the middle and last miles

SPEAKER: Sam Saad, VP of strategic initiatives for Gatik

BIO: Saad currently heads up strategic initiatives for Gatik, a company offering AVs for B2B short-haul logistics. He has a 15-year track record of delivering complex projects across diverse sectors. Prior to Gatik, Saad co-founded the Innovation Factory’s Centre for Integrated Transportation and Mobility, a five-year initiative to accelerate the development of connected and autonomous vehicle technologies.


“E-commerce has essentially meant that consumers are expecting to access every single SKU in our customers’ inventory, and they’re expecting to get that not only two days from now or a day from now, but really within the same day. … They want to be able to have that experience within a single pane of glass, where they can order whatever they like and have it delivered to them in any way that they like.”

“There’s a lot of turnover in different driver pools, and at the end of the day, you need to make sure that if you have a transportation asset, if you have a vehicle, that you’re going to be able to utilize it when you need to utilize it.”

“Most of our customers have very ambitious and very laudable sustainability goals, and one of the best ways to achieve those goals is of course through their transportation system. … So one of our jobs is to deploy vehicles today that are both electric and autonomous.”

“Once you have an autonomous vehicle working for you, you don’t have to wait for a human to enable it. It’s going to be ready to go, it’s going to be ready to drive, it’s never going to be tired or sick, it’s not going to decide to have a career change and switch jobs on you. It’s gonna be there and reliable whenever you need it.”

F3: Future of Freight Festival


The second annual F3: Future of Freight Festival will be held in Chattanooga, “The Scenic City,” this November. F3 combines innovation and entertainment — featuring live demos, industry experts discussing freight market trends for 2024, afternoon networking events, and Grammy Award-winning musicians performing in the evenings amidst the cool Appalachian fall weather.

Jack Daleo

Jack Daleo is a staff writer for Flying Magazine covering advanced air mobility, including everything from drones to unmanned aircraft systems to space travel — and a whole lot more. He spent close to two years reporting on drone delivery for FreightWaves, covering the biggest news and developments in the space and connecting with industry executives and experts. Jack is also a basketball aficionado, a frequent traveler and a lover of all things logistics.