FedEx announced today that it will launch a new “data-driven commerce platform” this fall called fdx that it says will give online merchants “end-to-end e-commerce solutions,” including data for supply chain management. The platform will build on what it offers with ShopRunner, an online e-commerce store the company bought in 2020.
The company writes that fdx will combine new features with those already in ShopRunner, like enabling merchants to give estimated delivery dates to customers during shopping and ordering, or data on supply chain resources’ carbon impact. FedEx says when fdx launches in the fall, it will add “more efficient, cost-effective deliveries” using its data. FedEx’s system would also enable a “custom post-purchase experience” so brands can give customers more accurate shipment information.
The move appears aimed at competing with Amazon, a company FedEx has seen as a threat to its business for years. In 2019, FedEx declined to renew a contract to fly Amazon cargo through FedEx Express. Later that year, Amazon forbade its sellers from using FedEx for Prime deliveries during the holidays, blaming declining performance — a ban it lifted the next year.
FedEx has been losing ground to Amazon, as has UPS, so much so that Amazon made more home package deliveries in the US in 2022 than either of them. That’s just a few years after the online retail giant built up a logistics operation that largely uses tightly controlled third-party contractors that Amazon insists aren’t its employees.
At the same time, Amazon was continuing to build up its own logistics operation that uses a fleet of mostly tightly controlled third-party contractors that it insists aren’t employees. That move has paid off, as the company now delivers more packages than UPS or FedEx.
The Verge contacted FedEx for more information, but it did not immediately respond.
Update January 14th, 2024, 3:43PM ET: Updated to add clarity.