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  • DATVF.LAXDAL
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  • DATVF.SEALAX
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  • OTVI.USA
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American Shipper

Home Depot exec behind new drayage collaborative platform

E*DRAY is attempting to provide cargo owners and drayage providers a neutral platform to make drayage more efficient and speed flow through container terminals.

   A former international logistics executive with The Home Depot is behind a new technology provider aiming to make drayage operations more efficient at container terminals.
   The new company, E*DRAY, is headed by Reade Kidd, who previously managed international transportation for the home improvement retailer and also spent time at the global freight forwarder Damco.
   The concept behind E*DRAY is to provide a neutral platform for the coordination of block stowage on vessels, so-called flow stacks in terminals (also called peel-off), and export street turns for trucks (also called matchbacks).
   The system is being rolled out on a market-by-market basis, with operations live in Seattle and Tacoma and a planned launch in Los Angeles and Long Beach at the end of March. The company said it spent 12 months planning and testing the system, and another nine months developing the technology to underpin the platform.
   Among the six investors in the platform is the liner carrier CMA CGM, which last year set up a seed investment fund to encourage broader use of technology within the liner shipping industry.
   The idea behind E*DRAY is to speed the flow containers through container terminals and lower costs for drayage companies and drivers by reducing terminal wait times and empty miles driven.
   “E*DRAY drivers no longer have to wait for a specific load,” the company said in a statement. “They simply grab the next container in the flow stack and go. This significantly reduces wait times on terminals and truck emissions. Once containers reach the street, E*DRAY offers real-time visibility to containers, which provides the opportunity for coordination of export back-hauls or matchbacks.
   E*DRAY said it can foster these processes without disintermediating the drayage provider-cargo owner relationship.
   “Drayage companies and cargo owners participating in the program reconcile their moves through E*DRAY’s proprietary software solution, creating a truly collaborative ecosystem,” the company said. “E*DRAY’s platform standardizes and enhances this solution for those already able to execute portions of the above and also creates a unique opportunity for those that can’t.”
   The system is being championed by Port of Los Angeles Executive Director Gene Seroka, who has advocated for broader use of the peel-off concept (and technology in general) to speed cargo flow through the port’s leased terminals.
   “The Port of Los Angeles (POLA) is supportive of programs like E*DRAY to help cargo velocity through our gateway,” he said in a statement. “With our GE Transportation initiative underway, E*DRAY stands to both strengthen and complement what we are bringing to the port community.”
   In a briefing with American Shipper in late 2017 (before the platform was live), Kidd said the idea was borne out of the inefficiency and look of collaboration inherent in terminal outflow operations. He said the goal was to reduce the number of times containers are touched in container yards by better coordination.
   He said the goal was not to cut out the freight broker, drayage provider, or to replace a shipper’s TMS.
   “We’re trying to sit in there as a middleware,” he said.
   More specifically, the platform allows shippers and carriers to organize stowage in such a way that containers from a single major shipper (or a group of coordinated smaller shippers) can be stacked, and then removed by a pool of drayage providers using the platform.
   In other words, E*DRAY gives ports, terminals, carriers, shippers, and drayage providers a tangible means to put into practice the theoretical peel-off concept.
   “The Port of Los Angeles (POLA) is supportive of programs like E*DRAY to help cargo velocity through our gateway,” Seroka said. “With our GE Transportation initiative underway, E*DRAY stands to both strengthen and complement what we are bringing to the port community.”

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