Innovation That Matters

Intention-based shipping brought to the UK

Work & Lifestyle

With intention-based shipping spreading like wildfire, we’re not surprised to see that it’s now catching on in the UK, too. Shiply, which set up shop in 2008, is a free online marketplace where transport companies bid for listed shipments. After creating an online account, consumers list what they need to ship and provide details about pickup, delivery and shipment dates. Anything from a pet carriage to a car can be listed. Transport providers then bid for the shipment, potentially turning unused space in their trucks into profit. Shiply’s system means that as companies try to outbid one another, users typically save about 75% on their shipping costs. Users can contribute and read feedback left by other customers, and accept the bid with which they feel happiest. The company states that 25% of European lorries run completely empty. By filling up this space, Shiply makes sure trucks get extra cash for unused space, and saves consumers money. Of course, it’s hugely beneficial in terms of reducing carbon emissions and congestion, too. Which is why Shiply was awarded a EUR 100,000 runner-up prize in this year’s Green Challenge. (RidgeBlade, which we featured last week, won the top prize of EUR 500,000.) As the success of services like this depends on reaching a critical mass of users, it’s interesting to see Shiply helping itself along with a special eBay widget, which can be integrated in eBay listings, letting potential bidders get cheap courier quotes from Shiply on the spot. In addition, 4,000 shipping companies have already listed their services on Shiply. Saving the planet by intelligently linking wants and needs—there’s plenty of mileage left in that. Web: Spotted by: Green Challenge



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