Oracle + Uber: Co-Innovating to Transform Last Mile Delivery

Produced by

Jordan K. Speer 

Research Director, Worldwide Retail Product Sourcing, Fulfillment and Sustainability Strategies, IDC

Jordi Suarez

Sr. Director, Global Head of Uber Direct, Uber

Jeff Warren

Global Vice President

In the ever-evolving landscape of retail, the shift towards online shopping has not only escalated consumer expectations but also posed unique challenges and opportunities for retailers worldwide. Amidst this shift, a collaboration between two giants, Oracle and Uber, aims to redefine the standards of last-mile delivery. This partnership was at the heart of a thought-provoking session titled "Oracle + Uber: Co-innovating to Transform Last Mile Delivery," shedding light on the evolving landscape of retail logistics and customer experience.

The Era of Instant Gratification
The consumer's desire for instant gratification has never been more evident. "75% of consumers now expect express delivery," remarked Jeff Warren, Global Vice President at Oracle. This demand for speed and convenience has pushed retailers to rethink their delivery models. Jordi Suarez, Sr. Director and Global Head of Uber Direct, highlighted the stakes, "44% of consumers are likely to switch brands if express delivery isn't offered."

The partnership between Oracle and Uber emerges as a beacon of innovation, targeting this very need for speed, efficiency, and customer satisfaction. By integrating Uber's logistical prowess with Oracle's technological infrastructure, the duo aims to provide retailers with a seamless, end-to-end delivery solution that not only meets but exceeds consumer expectations.

Challenges in the Retail Landscape
Jordan K. Speer, Research Director at IDC, shed light on the monumental challenges retailers face, including the staggering $743 billion in returns across North America. "Returns have always been an afterthought," she stated, emphasizing the need for a systemic overhaul. The lack of real-time inventory visibility, inaccurate forecasting, and inefficient reverse logistics are just the tip of the iceberg.

Jordi painted a vivid picture of Uber's mission to transform these challenges into opportunities. "Uber Direct is our white-labeled delivery solution, designed to offer on-demand delivery to customers," he explained. This move not only aims to reduce delivery costs but also addresses the critical issue of labor shortages, offering a scalable, flexible solution for retailers.

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A Unified Vision for Retail
The alliance is not just about logistics; it's a vision for a unified retail experience. "We're offering a unique end-to-end experience that allows any retailer to have complete control over the whole process," Jordi stated. This integration promises to enhance inventory planning, allocation, and replenishment, paving the way for a more efficient, profitable retail model.

The Uber Edge
What sets Uber Direct apart is its ability to create stronger brand loyalty through an improved delivery experience. "We've seen that when retailers offer on-demand delivery, they witness significant growth," Jordi shared. This consumer-centric approach is at the heart of the partnership, aiming to empower retailers with the tools they need to fulfill customer demands effectively.

Sustainability and Workforce Engagement
Jordan highlighted the intertwined challenges of sustainability and workforce engagement in the retail ecosystem. The partnership aims to address these by optimizing shipping, reducing packaging waste, and ensuring efficient use of resources. "Workforce mobility is a key area of focus," Jordan noted, suggesting that flexible, data-driven solutions are crucial for the future of retail.

Looking Ahead
As the retail industry stands at a crossroads, the collaboration between Oracle and Uber represents a significant leap towards a more integrated, customer-centric model. "The biggest aspect is the overall customer experience," Jeff concluded. This partnership not only reimagines last-mile delivery but also sets a new benchmark for innovation, efficiency, and sustainability in retail.

As retailers navigate the complexities of the modern marketplace, the insights from Jeff, Jordi, and Speer Jordan provide a roadmap for transformation. The Oracle-Uber alliance is not just a solution; it's a vision for the future of retail, where technology, logistics, and customer satisfaction converge to create unprecedented value.

APRIL 2024