The need to know

The need to know for the week ending 25th June 2021

The need to know from Reuters’ global network of journalists

Amazon sees Prime Day sales boost amid supply chain snags Inc's Prime Day saw strong online sales growth in the United States on Monday even as supply chain snafus and a robust spending appetite limited the level of discounts on popular products like electronics.

German union calls for Amazon workers to strike on ‘Prime Day’

A German trade union called on workers at seven Amazon warehouses to go on strike on Monday for several days to coincide with the global Prime Day promotion.

Semiconductor shortage and the U.S. auto industry

Semiconductors have become so ubiquitous that it is easy to take them for granted until they are suddenly in short supply. 

Freight tech startup Forto raises $240 million in Softbank-led round

Forto has raised $240 million from investors led by Softbank, the freight technology startup said on Monday, and will invest in expanding its platform for organising trade shipments between China and Europe.

DS Smith sees second-half growth on online shopping boom

DS Smith said on Tuesday it saw record second-half growth in box volumes, as the British cardboard maker benefited from a pandemic-driven boom in online shopping that helped offset the initial impact of COVID-19 lockdowns.

S.Africa to revamp ailing port system, says Ramaphosa

South Africa’s National Ports Authority (NPA) will operate as a stand alone business under the aegis of state-owned freight logistics group Transnet, President Cyril Ramaphosa said on Tuesday, as the country tries to overhaul some of the world’s worst-performing ports.

Hong Kong's Lalamove confidentially files for U.S. IPO

Lalamove, a Hong Kong-based logistics company, has confidentially submitted paperwork with U.S. regulators for an initial public offering, Bloomberg reported on Wednesday, citing people with knowledge of the matter.

Self-driving truck tech firm Embark to go public via $5.2 bln SPAC deal

Embark Trucks Inc said on Wednesday it will merge with a blank-check firm, in a deal that will give the private equity firm Tiger Global Management backed self-driving truck technology developer a market capitalization of $5.2 billion.
China's Full Truck Alliance valued at over $24 bln in strong NYSE debut

Full Truck Alliance Co Ltd (FTA) rose more than 18% in its debut on the New York Stock Exchange on Tuesday, giving the startup a valuation of over $24 billion in the biggest U.S. stock market listing for a Chinese company this year.
Nikkei posts biggest gains in a year as shippers hit 10-year highs
Japanese shares jumped on Tuesday, tracking Wall Street overnight, boosted by shipping stocks after Mitsui OSK Lines more than tripled its half-yearly net profit forecast.

Soaring costs challenge Canadian retailers counting on post-COVID surge

Canadian retailers are readying for a post-pandemic rebound as consumers emerge from lockdowns and open their wallets, but higher costs are eroding their profit margins and fanning inflationary pressures.
U.N. adopts new measures to cut ship emissions, critics call for more

The U.N. shipping agency approved further measures on Thursday to boost the energy efficiency of commercial vessels although critics said the move fell short of what was needed to cut the industry's carbon footprint.

Shortage of people, materials can slow energy transition - Enel CEO

A shortage of personnel and basic materials are the main constraints to the pace of the energy transition for top power suppliers such as Europe's largest utility Enel, the company's Chief Executive Francesco Starace told Reuters.
Metals boom sees the return of physically-backed funds

The boom times have returned for industrial metals over the last year as global manufacturing activity has come roaring back from its pandemic lows.

Brazil mulls law to track cattle suppliers to curb deforestation

Brazil, home to the world's largest commercial cattle herd, will propose a new law to track cattle suppliers that sell animals to meat producers like JBS and Marfrig, as ranching is a key driver of deforestation.

From elsewhere around the web:

More container ships score ‘astronomical’ $100,000/day rates. [Freight Waves]

Shipping Woes Begin to Unravel, Even as Supply Chain Disruptions Plague the Industry. [SDC Exec]

US needs 330M square feet of warehouse space to keep up with e-commerce. [Supply Chain Dive]

China’s major ports continue to grow despite congestion worries. [Port Technology]

A 'slow June' as the air cargo market hovers, waiting for signs of recovery. [The Loadstar]

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