Hermes to test pay-as-you-go cargo software with Icelandair Cargo

Hermes Logistics Technologies is planning to test a new iteration of its cargo management software, “Hermes NG,” in partnership with longtime client Icelandair Cargo. The cloud-based, artificial intelligence (A.I.)-enabled system incorporates a “pay-as-you-go” model comparable to that of apps like Airbnb and Uber, which tailors cost to frequency of transactions.

“For a ground-handler to buy the NG product is zero cost,” said Alexis Labonne, who was recently appointed chief technology officer at Hermes.“It’s zero up-front costs, zero capital costs. It’s all operational expenditure.” For example, a ground-handler would pay per vehicle control ticket (VCT) as opposed to a lump sum.

The pay-as-you-go model has become a trend among different players throughout the supply chain, like reusable temperature-controlled packaging companies that charge per use of a container, and logistics companies offering more flexibility and short-term booking of warehouse capacity.

The A.I. element included in Hermes NG uses machine learning to detect and prevent supply chain disruptions, and suggests changes to processes.

“All of the sudden, we have huge amount of history about cargo data around the world,” Labonne told Air Cargo World. “Now, we’re starting to plug-in machine learning to help start finding some insights,” which serve to optimize customers’ supply chains by identifying causes of delays and backlogs.

Labonne also said Hermes is in the beginning stages of working with Icelandair Cargo to test the software within its operations, adding that the airline is an ideal partner to test the software due to Iceland’s geographic air cargo microcosm. He said that he hopes to “they will be pushing the first VCTs” in April, and sees the product appealing to its clients in Latin America and the Middle East.

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