UPS, SF Holding jv wins regulatory approval in China

UPS’ first 747-8F was once covered in brown-paper wrapping. The bird has now been unwrapped, and may soon be headed towards an airport near you!

Updated 10 October 2017.

On 28 September, UPS and SF Holding (the parent company of SF Express), formally received approval from China’s Ministry of Commerce to launch the joint venture it announced in May.

The joint venture will leverage the assets of both companies to enhance, and provide a wider range of international delivery services. Initially, the jv will focus on providing e-commerce merchants in China better access to the US market by focusing on deliveries moving from China to the United States.

A new service called Global Reach Plus will be the first jointly-launched product. Global Reach Plus can be thought of as an economical deferred service that offers the transparency of premium express services, with parcels collected by SF in China, and ultimately delivered to their destination in the United States via UPS. Jim Joseph, president of transportation group, UPS Asia Pacific Region told Cargo Facts that UPS’ existing gateways in Hong Kong and Shanghai will be utilized to consolidate US-bound parcels sent by Global Reach Plus.

Global Reach Plus offers customers:

  • End-to-end visibility: using SF’s tracking tool, integrated with UPS’s industry-leading technologies
  • Single point of contact: for customer service via SF, with shipment pick-up by SF at the origin & delivery by UPS at the destination
  • Flexibility: Late order cut-off time for shipment pick-ups and multiple delivery options including the use of UPS My Choice® and UPS Access Point™ network
  • Time-in-transit-reliability with 5-7 business days deliveries powered by UPS & SF’s networks

Some have questioned whether the JV could eventually lead to UPS Worldwide Express parcels moving on SF Express’ domestic air network. UPS has confirmed however, that there are currently no plans to move Worldwide Express parcels moving within mainland China via SF Express aircraft. “Packages shipped using services within our UPS Worldwide Express portfolio leverage our Browntail network for reliable on-time delivery,” Joseph added.

In related news, last week UPS took delivery of the first of fourteen 747-8Fs it has on firm order with Boeing. UPS put the freighter, which it has named “The Spirit of Joe Sutter,” into service immediately. Commenting on the newly-added aircraft, Joseph said, “With the delivery of the new -8s, we will have the ability to cascade capacity throughout our entire network, catering to the demands of markets that are exhibiting strong growth.” UPS has options for fourteen more 747-8Fs, and Cargo Facts has heard, but has not been able to confirm, rumors that UPS plans to exercise some, or all, of those options.

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