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February 10, 2017


Benchmark Report Shows Need to Automate Global Trade Operations to Handle e-Commerce Growth

Supply Chain Professionals Point to Cybersecurity and Changing Trade Regulations as Top Concerns in 2017

EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ, February 10, 2017 – Retailers who are slow to adopt new online channels have suffered in slowing brick-and-mortar sales leading to store closures or bankruptcy. Innovative retailers and importers experienced a huge uptick in sales from e-commerce channels in 2016. According to a report by Adobe Digital Insights, between November 1st and December 31st, online sales hit $91.7 billion, up 11% from $82.5 billion a year ago.

In order to provide the industry with timely information that can be leveraged to take advantage of this opportunity, American Association of Exporters & Importers (AAEI) and Amber Road launched the inaugural Benchmark Report: e-Commerce Impacts Global Trade.

“While the disruptive force e-commerce has on the economy appears most prominently in the retail sector, this latest digitalization of trade will continue to change industry trade patterns and product distribution for years to come,” explains Marianne Rowden, President and CEO, AAEI. “With growing internet penetration, a consistent customer shift from store to web shopping, and the proliferation of smartphones and tablets, the growth of online shopping is massive.” Fifty-one percent of survey respondents experienced an uptick in sales through this channel.

The report draws on data from a January 2017 survey of over 250 supply chain professionals; manufacturers, shippers, logistics providers, and other related service providers. Some notable data points include:

  • 75% have an online sales channel
  • 65% of those who don’t have existing online channels are now planning to implement them in the near future
  • Nearly 36% experienced shipping/transportation challenges that impact retailers’ ability to achieve strategic goals and objectives
  • The Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) accounted for the largest percentage of delays for imports
  • Cybersecurity was the top concern for shippers, followed closely by changing global trade regulations

e-Commerce isn’t new, but it has reached a critical mass to significantly impact global trade. According to the report, e-Commerce has revolutionized business-to-consumer sales, resulting in a newly empowered consumer with higher expectations for their retail shopping experience.

“While there is clearly a large market opportunity associated with global e-commerce, there are challenges identified in the report that companies must face to create a successful e-commerce infrastructure,” says Gary Barraco, director, global product marketing, Amber Road. “To stay ahead of the e-commerce curve, companies must address primary gaps with a combination of technology, trade compliance knowledge, and automation.”

AAEI and Amber Road are hosting a complimentary webinar on February 14, 2017 to highlight the key takeaways from the 2017 AAEI e-Commerce Benchmark Report. Register here.

About AAEI

The American Association of Exporters & Importers (AAEI) is the premier trade organization representing those immediately engaged in and directly impacted by developments pertaining to international trade. AAEI is recognized as technical experts regarding the day-to-day facilitation of trade.

About Amber Road

Amber Road’s (NYSE: AMBR) mission is to improve the way companies manage their international supply chains and conduct global trade. As a leading provider of cloud based global trade management (GTM) solutions, we automate the global supply chain across sourcing, logistics, cross-border trade, and regulatory compliance activities to dramatically improve operating efficiencies and financial performance. This includes collaborating with suppliers on development, sourcing and quality assurance; executing import and export compliance checks and generating international shipping documentation; booking international carriers and tracking goods as they move around the world; and minimizing the associated duties through preferential trade agreements and foreign trade zones. Our solution combines enterprise-class software, trade content sourced from government agencies and transportation providers in 147 countries, and a global supply chain network connecting our customers with their trading partners, including suppliers, testing/auditing firms, freight forwarders, customs brokers and transportation carriers. We deliver our GTM solution using a Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) model and leverage a highly flexible technology framework to quickly and efficiently meet our customers’ unique requirements around the world.

For more information, please visit, email or call 201-935-8588.


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