FedEx and other private parcel services became more prominent due to a lack of satisfaction with the United States Postal Service (USPS). Tennessee-headquartered FedEx offers both air and ground courier operations including third-party logistics operations, generating over 60 billion U.S. dollars in the 2017 fiscal year. The company’s key competitors include Georgia-based UPS (United Parcel Service of North America, Inc.), YRC Worldwide and Deutsche Post DHL. In 2012, FedEx was the second-largest for-hire carrier and the leading less-than-truckload (LTL) carrier in the United States. The courier industry in the United States is sized at around 60 billion U.S. dollars.
As a result of the world’s growing digitization, the industry has gone through several innovation processes, including the use of GPS* and RFID** technology to track vehicles and parcels. While the ubiquity of electronic mailing continues to trouble the USPS, courier services remain the beneficiaries of growing online retail sales: End customers as well as businesses are increasingly buying physical items online, and these items require delivering. Moreover, parcel processing systems that are able to sort through 20,000 packages in one hour have made the industry more efficient. Satellite computer systems have also improved the state of monitoring Internet-connected courier fleet trucks.
* Global Positioning System
** Radio-frequency Identification