By Paul Page
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Uber Freight is getting new funding and fresh direction as its parent company copes with broader upheaval in its core business. Greenbriar Equity Group is leading a $500 million investment round in the truck brokerage arm of Uber Technologies Inc., the WSJ Logistics Report's Jennifer Smith writes, in an agreement that values the digital freight business at $3.3 billion. The transaction comes as Uber pushes to cut costs in a ride-hailing business that has staggered under the pandemic and to complete a $2.65 billion all-stock deal to acquire Postmates Inc. Uber has said it is looking at all of its businesses, and its adding two partners from transport and logistics-focused Greenbriar to Uber Freight's board under the new investment. Uber Freight has grabbed market share with its load-matching app, but it lost $49 million in the second quarter on $211 million in revenue and the unit's growth rate has slowed.
The maritime world's cybersecurity problem is getting deeper. The International Maritime Organization was hit by what the global regulator called a "sophisticated cyberattack," the WSJ Logistics Report's Costas Paris writes, days after a hack at CMA CGM SA operations crippled electronic systems at the container line. The incident at the French ocean carrier was apparently a ransomware attack and CMA CGM suspects that data was stolen. It's unclear how far hackers got with the IMO, a high-profile agency attached to the United Nations, but the regulator's website was down. Experts say most ransomware and other intrusions are financially motivated, and regulators such as the IMO can be a target if hackers suspect they hold valuable data. Some carrier executives have blanched at the potential cost of cybersecurity fixes, but they may find the cost of growing incursions and communications shutdowns too much to bear.
SUPPLY CHAIN STRATEGIES
America's troubled aerospace supply chains are tilting a bit more to the Southeast. Boeing Co. is ending production of its 787 Dreamliner in the Seattle area after more than a decade, the WSJ's Andrew Tangel reports, and consolidating assembly of the popular wide-body jet in South Carolina next year. The aircraft maker is taking a reduced manufacturing operation from Everett, Wash., after slashing production because of the pandemic-driven drop in travel. The action will bring more manufacturing to the North Charleston, S.C., site along with deliveries of high-value aircraft parts. It isn't clear how the shift will affect Boeing's heavily unionized workforce in the Puget Sound region. Efforts to organize Boeing's workforce in the right-to-work state of South Carolina haven't succeeded. Boeing still produces wide-body 767s, 777s and 747s in Everett, but those assembly lines are slowing and the 747 program is set to end in 2022.
IN OTHER NEWS
Amazon.com Inc. says more than 19,000 of its workers have contracted coronavirus this year. (WSJ)
U.S. consumer spending rose 1% in August while personal income fell 2.7%. (WSJ)
A measure of U.S. manufacturing activity expanded in August for the fourth straight month. (WSJ)
New filings for jobless benefits in the U.S. held nearly steady at 837,000 for the fifth straight week. (WSJ)
Sales figures suggest the U.S. auto industry bounced back relatively strongly in the second quarter. (WSJ)
U.S. highway fatalities fell this spring amid coronavirus lockdowns but the rate of crash deaths rose sharply. (WSJ)
Logistics automation provider AutoStore claims in a lawsuit that U.K. online grocer Ocado Group PLC infringed on its technology patents. (Dow Jones Newswires)
Gilead Sciences Inc. is taking control of supplies of its Covid-19 treatment drug remdesivir from the U.S. government. (WSJ)
Bed Bath & Beyond Inc.'s quarterly comparable sales rose for the first time since 2016 as digital sales soared 89%. (WSJ)
PepsiCo Inc.'s quarterly revenue rose 5.3% as beverage sales rebounded. (WSJ)
The government spending bill passed by Congress and signed into law extends highway programs for a year. (Heavy Duty Trucking)
Engine-maker Rolls-Royce Holdings PLC plans to raise $2.6 billion in a rights issue to bolster its tattered balance sheet. (Financial Times)
Walmart Inc. plans to hire more than 20,000 seasonal workers for e-commerce fulfillment centers this year. (Supply Chain Dive)
Hennes & Mauritz AB plans to close about 250 of its apparel stores next year, or 5% of its global sites. (Bloomberg)
The New York Shipping Exchange raised $13.5 million in new capital to back its business setting freight contracts between shippers and ocean carriers. (The Loadstar)
Mediterranean Shipping Co. is considering a new round of purchases of ultra-large container ships. (TradeWinds)
Vessel handling-equipment makers Cargotec and Konecranes plan to merge. (Splash 247)
Amazon dropped its search for a distribution center site in Gaithersburg, Md., in the Washington, D.C., suburbs. (Bethesda Magazine)
E-commerce logistics operator Radial will build a $40 million fulfillment center outside Atlanta. (Henry Herald)
XPO Logistics Inc. is closing a Jenkins Township, Pa., distribution center and laying off 111 employees. (Times Leader)
SAS Cargo resumed freighter flights to China. (Air Cargo News)
Bicycles are in tight supply amid enormous pandemic-driven demand. (Colorado Sun)
Paul Page is editor of WSJ Logistics Report. Follow the WSJ Logistics Report team: @PaulPage, @jensmithWSJ and @CostasParis. Follow the WSJ Logistics Report on Twitter at @WSJLogistics.
Write to Paul Page at firstname.lastname@example.org
(END) Dow Jones Newswires