For the better part of this century, UPS has been out to prove to the world that it stands for much more than shipping. From its 2002 “What can Brown do you for you?” campaign to “We love logistics,” the 108-year-old Atlanta-based company has steadily positioned itself as a B2B solutions partner for global companies whose needs extend beyond a package pickup or drop-off. Its latest integrated campaign drives this mission home via the clever new tagline, “United Problem Solvers.”
This global campaign reveals how UPS works behind the scenes, across many industries, to serve greater goals—saving lives, for example, by making sure critical medicines are transported at the correct temperatures. The concept behind “United Problem Solvers” is also guiding how UPS thinks about its business strategy and portfolio development. For instance, in July of this year, the companyacquired Coyote Logistics for USD $1.8 billion, a move that significantly expands its freight brokerage business and will improve holiday-season shipping performance. The deal merges UPS’ fleet of 100,000 brown package vans and other vehicles with Coyote’s experience linking customers to a network of 35,000 trucking companies. The partnership will help reduce the number of trips UPS drivers make without generating a return. With clients ranging from food and drink companies to retailers and industrial firms, Coyote should be able to help fill empty UPS trailers (that have completed their deliveries) with customers’ goods.
Internally, the company remains focused on increasing the capacity of its global network while improving efficiencies through innovations like ORION, its proprietary route-optimization software. In recent years, UPS has also set its sights on expanding its network and capabilities in global growth markets and has honed in on fast-growing industries, such as healthcare and e-commerce.
A focus on expansion, innovation, and holistic solutions has paid off. Following a drop in fourth quarter profits last year, due to high costs incurred during the holiday season, UPS rallied in the second quarter of 2015, buoyed by gains in international business.