Published Online:https://doi.org/10.1287/inte.2016.0878

Collaborative shipping programs, whereby companies bundle their transport loads, are a growing trend in logistics. By bundling shipments with other partners, available space in truck hauls for one company can be used to transport shipments for other companies. The benefits are reduced logistics costs and a lower carbon footprint. Although the advantages of collaborative shipping are clear, finding suitable collaboration partners is a major impediment. In this article we present a tool that enables the quick identification of potential partners based on their geographical compatibility, even when the database of shipment lanes is very large. The tool allows the detection of bundling, back-hauling, and round-trip opportunities, as well as “collect-and-or-drop” opportunities in which shipments are collected and (or) dropped off en route. Tri-Vizor, a facilitator and orchestrator of horizontal logistics partnerships, is currently using this tool. Any company that is looking for collaborative shipping partners would also find it valuable. For Tri-Vizor, whose database has grown to over 130,000 shipment lanes, this tool has become an indispensable asset in detecting collaborative shipping opportunities.

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