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Road freight in sub-Saharan Africa goes digital with DHL’s Saloodo!

Digital transformation is a top priority for the industry. (Image source: Anita /Pixabay)

Digital freight forwarder Saloodo!, a subsidiary of DHL Global Forwarding, has launched its digital logistics platform for shippers and transport providers in South Africa, bringing the first digital road freight solution to the region

An efficient road freight network is an important conduit of trade within a geographically wide-spread country such as South Africa but also with 16 landlocked countries within Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA). However, much of the region’s road freight operations remain fragmented and highly traditional, missing out on the visibility, efficiency and security that logistics technology offers.

“Digital transformation is a top priority for the industry and given the demographics, we expect demand for digital transformation to be driven by emerging markets globally,” said Tobias Maier, CEO of Saloodo! For the Middle East and Africa.

“Africa is the world’s youngest continent with 60 per cent of the continent below 25. This is a dynamic generation of digitally-minded young adults, demanding smart, digital solutions both on the business and home front.”

“With real-time visibility, Saloodo! will inject greater transparency and efficiency to the road network in the region, enabling shippers – from small enterprises and start-ups to large multinational groups - to find trusted and reliable freight carriers in South Africa. This will, in turn, help carriers manage existing fleets and optimize capacity with full truckload shipments,” Maier added.

The platform was first launched in 2017 in Germany to connect companies and transport providers within Germany or from Germany throughout Europe. Moving swiftly into emerging markets, the digital freight service was introduced in the Middle East six months ago where some 350 shippers registered. Collectively, the service has grown to more than 30,000 shippers and over 12,000 carriers covering 35 countries. During this time, the trucks managed by Saloodo! have travelled a total distance of 18 million km, which is equivalent to approximately 450 round-the-globe trips or more than 23 voyages to the moon and back.

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