In December of 2013 Amazon was very public that they saw fit to blame UPS for late deliveries to consumers. Recall that the winter of 2013 was brutal and in particular in the Oklahoma/Texas area which unfortunately has a number of UPS hubs.

The Amazon story got a lot of traction and there was no letting up even though there is little UPS could have done to mitigate the problems resulting from Mother Nature.

When roads are closed to the vehicles transporting packages, when roads are closed to employees who have to come work at the sort centers and delivery terminals, the carrier gets the black eye.

I said at that time that UPS management should have flown to Seattle and reasonably done a post mortum with the powers that be at Amazon ( without it being played out in the press) and then in my humble opinion UPS should have followed up with a letter canceling their "contract" with Amazon.

As a public conveyance UPS has to provide service to Amazon, but they don't have to grant them any concessions or discounts.

My take is that it's likely and probable that UPS would have better service and higher margins on the rest of their book of business if they were unburdened by an ungrateful customer.

In late December, trade pubs were rife with stories that some shipper ( assumed to be Amazon by some ) is building out its own air network via leases and its own sortation hub in Wilmington Ohio.

The tone of the articles appears to be to sew fear, uncertainty and doubt, into the hearts and minds of shippers and investors in UPS and FedEx.

If you follow the parcel business closely, in all its dimensions, I believe Amazon needs UPS far more than UPS needs Amazon, and it would not hurt UPS much if at all if the two part company. The parcel integrators may have now succeeded in enabling another firm to build sufficient critical mass to finance a third national network albeit with limited service options at this point in time.

There has been no word from Amazon or anyone else that they are the root cause of all the flights in and out of Wilmington Ohio, but regardless of who it is it should be viewed as a positive for the parcel industry and not necessarily a negative for UPS and FedEx.

There is plenty of room in this emerging ecommerce space for more solution providers in particular with regard to residential transactions . Just keep in mind that the core year round is, and continues to be business to business transactions.

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