The practice of value-added logistics was introduced slowly and painfully to Latin America via the best practices of foreign investors. It has taken almost 15 years for most local large and mid-size players to accept the economic imperative of out-sourcing non-core logistical functions. Where foreign investment is strongest, logistics outsourcing is most widely accepted by foreign and domestic firms alike. Conversely, 3rd party logistics has yet to make inroads in much of the region where foreign competition is muted at best. Logistics suppliers are conservative investors and began by limiting their business models to international logistics where contracts were paid in dollars and customers were predominated by multinationals. However, that segment is now over supplied and the next frontier of opportunity lies in domestic logistics. The challenge there is the often antiquated regulations associated with trucking, domestic shipping and rail. It is still a work in progress.
AMI consultants have conducted over 75 studies of Latin America's logistics sector since 1993 in the following segments:
Sought After Services by the Logistics Sector
Mystery Shopping – Logistics contracts vary in size by a huge margin and as a B2B industry, pricing on larger contracts is at best opaque. Pricing becomes a huge decision driver for large clients, especially retailers, food producers and manufacturers, all of whom operate on low margins. Very clever mystery shopping is the only way to truly know the competition's pricing on large contracts.
Business Expansion – As Logistics players overcome their conservative nature and invest deeper into domestic logistics markets in LatAm, they require a 360 degree understanding of customer price sensitivity, competitor best practices as well as their less scrupulous practices on top of which a keen understanding of country risk is essential.
Partner Search – Most logistics providers cannot justify their own office and infrastructure in all of Latin America's 21 markets. Therefore, they rely on a network of 3rd party agents. Finding reliable, experienced and ethical agents can be a time consuming and tedious process without the aid of a consultancy that can narrow the options to qualified candidates.