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CES Attendees Focus on Customer Meetings, Transportation … – Transport Topics Online


CES attendees filter into the annual technology trade show.

CES attendees filter into the annual technology trade show. (Seth Clevenger/Transport Topics)

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LAS VEGAS — CES 2023 served as a prime opportunity for transportation businesses to meet with their customers and for industry and government officials alike to explore potential partnerships and spark innovation.

Ryder System, which was exhibiting at CES for the fourth time, had company experts on hand to talk with attendees and customers about logistics challenges and emerging technologies such as electric and automated trucks.

The annual technology show, held Jan. 5-8, has become a place for Ryder to meet with many of its customers, said Karen Jones, the company’s chief marketing officer and head of new product development.

For Ryder, those customers run the gamut from retailers relying on the company’s logistics and e-commerce fulfillment services to truck leasing customers eager to discuss how they might deploy electric trucks in their lease fleets.

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“Your customers are there,” Jones said. “The technologies that are moving logistics forward are there.”

Ryder Supply Chain Solutions ranks No. 13 on the Transport Topics Top 100 list of the largest logistics companies in North America.

CES also presents an opportunity for government officials to collaborate with industry and tech startups.

For the state of Michigan, the show served as a venue to connect large transportation industry players in the state with technology startups to help further the dialogue about electrification, connected vehicles, autonomy and other key industry topics.

“We view our ability to innovate within passenger vehicles as a good starter to a conversation around trucking, which we believe is the backbone of the American economy,” said Trevor Pawl, chief mobility officer for the state of Michigan. “All of these things that are revolutionizing how people move can also revolutionize how goods move.”

He said state government aims to support innovation in the areas of autonomous, connected, electric and shared vehicles — trends that are shaping the future of mobility.

Pawl also noted that Michigan has firsthand experience with supply chain bottlenecks as the home of two of the top three busiest border crossings on the U.S.-Canadian border.

“It’s hard in Michigan to have a trucking conversation without talking about the future of infrastructure and those two crossings and other crossings around the state that are so pivotal to North American trade,” he said.

Part of Michigan’s strategy to improve transportation in the state is providing initial seed money for innovation through public-private partnerships.

“We believe that deepens private sector relationships, attracts innovation and ultimately ends up in exponential investment,” Pawl said in an interview prior to the show. “I want to leave CES with a handful of significant public-private partnership opportunities that advance our infrastructure, build our industry and help us get our people ready for this massive transition.”

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