The technology world has seen a battle between walled-garden and open source models. Apple created a closed-loop ecosystem where it tightly controlled the customer experience. On the other hand, Google challenged the status quo with an open-source network that brought in a broad range of partners.

In logistics, we are seeing a similar battle emerge. On the one side, we have traditional incumbents FedEx and UPS, providing a set of owned capabilities, including assets such as planes, trucks, and warehouses. On the other side, we have startups like posing a challenge to the status quo. Bringg focuses on last mile, project44 and FourKites, Inc. target visibility, ReverseLogix addresses returns, and other specialists seek to pick off niche markets.

Will ecommerce logistics startups succeed in threatening the UPS-FedEx duopoly, as Emma Cosgrove proposes here?

Benjamin Gordon, Cambridge Capital