UPS sees opportunity in healthcare logistics

September 4, 2019

The U.S. healthcare system is in the spotlight as the election campaign gears up because of the growing sense that the cost of drugs, hospital visits, and treatments by doctors is spiraling out of control. The dilemma is putting pressure on all aspects of the system to cut costs. One area that is at the heart of healthcare delivery – though mostly out of sight – is healthcare logistics. This refers to the distribution of supplies and consumables to hospitals, doctors, and pharmacies, as well as the just-in-time delivery of temperature-sensitive drugs, biologics, and organs and tissues used in transplants. Getting this right means connecting medical products to the point of care. Among the biggest players in this field are, naturally enough, multinational shipping giants, like UPS. UPS is the world’s largest package delivery company, with a market capitalization of US$87.6 billion. UPS operates in 220 countries and territories and employs 481,000 people. Its operations include a cargo airline, freight-based trucking, and 5,000 franchised UPS stores. In 2018, it had net income of US$4.79 billion and revenues of US$71.8 billion. UPS is combining its traditional competency with new technologies to give it an edge. It hopes to one day be able to accept crypto currencies. It recently filed a Blockchain patent for a system to track healthcare and other shipments. It is testing the use of unmanned drones to deliver medical supplies to remote places. Through the UPS Foundation, UPS has combined blockchain, artificial intelligence and the Internet of Things to deliver drugs in remote parts of Ghana.  UPS supported a similar venture in Rwanda. These initiatives show how UPS is adapting to the promise of new technologies to drive down costs and increase efficiency to maintain its dominance. UPS is a component of the Harvest Brand Leaders Plus Income ETF (TSX: HBF, HBF.U). Many of the companies involved in creating logistics and transportation software for companies like UPS can be found in the Harvest managed  Blockchain Technologies ETF (TSX:HBLK).  Others are found in the Harvest Tech  Achievers Growth & Income ETF (TSX: HTA, HTA.U) For more on Harvest Portfolio Group Inc. ETFs click here. The views and/or opinions expressed in the blog are of a general nature and are for informational purposes only. Blog contents should not be considered as advice and/or a recommendation to purchase or sell the mentioned securities or used to engage in personal investment strategies. Investors should consult their investment advisor before making any investment decision.

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