Airborne Express : Case Study

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1.How and why has the express mail industry structure evolved in recent years? How have the changes affected small competitors? The US express mail industry is highly consolidated. 85% of the market is served by 3 service providers. There are six second tier players who serve the remaining 15%. FedEx and UPS lead the industry in services and innovation. The following trends have been observed in this Industry. Services: A host of services are provided to suit the needs to different businesses. Overnight shipping and next-morning delivery are most popular amongst other services like next-afternoon delivery and second day service. Same-day and early-next morning services are even costlier. Shipment volumes have risen over the decade…show more content…
As such there is no brand loyalty, however all the major players are know for their reliability and for a new entrant to establish the same will take a lot of time. There won't be any cost advantage factor as the hub-and-spoke model, used in this industry, can be implemented by new entrants. Economies of scale will not be in favor of the new competitor as the initial volume would be low. Switching costs are not high in this industry. Rivalry among established companies: This industry is highly consolidated with only 3 major players - somewhat an oligopoly. The industry is also characterized by numerous price wars between the 2 giants, namely, UPS and FedEx. Rest of the companies generally follow the trends set by these two firms or fall out. The exit barriers to this industry are high. This is due to the investments in hubs, vans, jets and other capital extensive infrastructure. Bargaining power of buyers: Businesses and individuals all fall under the customer's category for this industry. Big customers do get volume discounts and can negotiate prices with sales representatives. However smaller customers have to take what is being offered to them. The only say they have is that they can switch between the players, but due to intense competition, the prices offered are generally the same across the service band. Bargaining power of suppliers: The inputs to this industry are fuel, planes, vans, customs & permits etc. the companies do liaison

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