The market is segmented by Mode of Transport (Air, Sea), by Service (Freight Transport, Warehousing, Value-Added Services), and by Geography.

Market Snapshot

Study Period:


Base Year:


Fastest Growing Market:

Asia Pacific

Major Players:

80% of our clients seek made-to-order reports. How do you want us to tailor yours?

Market Overview

The global freight forwarding market is expected to grow steadily with a CAGR of more than 3.5% during the forecast period.

  • The growth in international trade volumes is a major driver for freight forwarding market. Moreover, the rise in trade agreements between countries is also contributing to growth of the market.
  • The booming e-commerce market is a major driver for the air freight forwarding industry. The air freight forwarding market has witnessed huge growth in 2017 and in the beginning of 2018 due to the global restocking cycle. However, the growth rate slowed down after the end of restocking cycle.
  • The growing demand for transport of perishables and life sciences/Healthcare sector is also expected to drive the growth of the market during the forecast period.
  • Technology is disrupting the freight forwarding business across the globe affecting the business structures and processes. The freight forwarding companies, carriers, are looing to digitize their internal processes and to develop integrated information technology infrastructure.
  • It is estimated that shippers are booking more than 10% of their volumes through online platforms.
  • With the number of Small and Medium sized enterprises (SMEs) increasing, the freight forwarding companies are looking to increase their business from SMEs. The online freight quote and booking platforms provide opportunity for SMEs to expand to international markets, as these platforms have large number of connections when compared to their traditional (brick-and-mortar) counterparts.
  • The freight forwarding business being non-asset based, the sector is facing high competition from other players in supply chain and technology based companies which are disrupting the freight forwarding market.

Scope of the Report

A complete background analysis of global freight forwarding market, market overview, market size estimation for key segments and emerging trends by segments, and market dynamics are covered in the report.

By Mode of Transport
Air Freight Forwarding
Sea Freight Forwarding
By Service
Freight Transport
Value-Added Services (Customs Clearance, Packaging, etc.)
North America
United States
United Kingdom
Rest of Europe
South Korea
Rest of Asia-Pacific
South America
Rest of South America
Middle East & Africa
South Africa
United Arab Emirates
Saudi Arabia
Rest of Middle East & Africa

Report scope can be customized per your requirements. Click here.

Key Market Trends

Sea Freight Forwarding to witness high growth through the forecast period

With the rise in global merchandise trade, the global maritime trade has been growing steadily driving the sea freight forwarding market. In 2017, the global seaborne trade reached 10.7 billion tons with an annual growth of 4%, the highest growth since 2013. The trade of containerized cargo is expected to grow at a faster rate with multimodal transport gaining popularity.

As the shipping liner companies are focusing on reducing the costs, they are looking to acquire or investing in a freight forwarding company. This increases the competition and also affects the established freight forwarding businesses to some extent. For example, the acquisition of a major freight forwarder CEVA logistics is completed in 2019 by the French shipping liner CMA CGM.

To understand key trends, Download Sample Report

Asia-Pacific is anticipated to witness high growth through the forecast period

Asia Pacific is expected to witness highest growth rate among the other regions, driven by swift growth in manufacturing sector in the region. Moreover, the economies in the region, especially the Southeast Asian countries are expected to have high growth rates. Although the region is witnessing huge growth with a lot of opportunities, there exists some challenges and inefficiencies such as in custom clearance processes, infrastructure in ports and airports, etc. ASEAN region as a whole is the emerging hotspot with a wide-variety of resources and attracting investments from across the world. Retail and manufacturing sectors are two key sectors that are growing rapidly in the region.

To understand geography trends, Download Sample Report.

Competitive Landscape

The global freight forwarding market is made up of large number of players. However, the top 20 players dominate the market accounting for more than 50% of the total market. Leading players in the market include Kuehne + Nagel, DHL, DB Schenker, DSV, Sinotrans, Bollore Logistics, and Expeditors. As the freight forwarding market is growing steadily and there exists abundant opportunity, the players need to embrace technologies, become more digitized, and increase the scale and efficiency of their operations. Kuehne + Nagel is one of the early technology adopter in the market. Having a strong network spanning across the globe is important for the companies. As the industry is highly competitive and witnessing huge transformations, the companies need to develop specialized solutions to improve the customer experience.

The companies engaged in various logistics businesses are following the trend of consolidation, similar is the case in freight forwarding industry. For instance, the acquisition of Panalpina by DSV creates a global freight forwarder with a revenue of USD 17 billion. The merge between these two companies also results in one of the largest air freight forwarding companies in the world. In Oct 2018, FedEx announced the acquisition of acquire Australia-based logistics company Manton Air-Sea Pty Ltd. to increase its forwarding capabilities. Manton is a leader in air and ocean freight forwarding solutions.

Table Of Contents


    1. 1.1 Study Deliverables

    2. 1.2 Study Assumptions

    3. 1.3 Scope of the Study


    1. 2.1 Analysis Methodology

    2. 2.2 Research Phases



    1. 4.1 Current Market Scenario

    2. 4.2 Value Chain / Supply Chain Analysis

    3. 4.3 Government Regulations and Initiatives

    4. 4.4 Technological Trends and insights on E-Freight Forwarding Market

    5. 4.5 Insights on E-Commerce Industry in the Region (Domestic and Cross-Border)

    6. 4.6 Spotlight - Freight Transportation Costs/Freight Rates

    7. 4.7 Brief on Freight Transport Corridors


    1. 5.1 Drivers

    2. 5.2 Restraints

    3. 5.3 Opportunities

    4. 5.4 Industry Attractiveness - Porter's Five Force Analysis


    1. 6.1 By Mode of Transport

      1. 6.1.1 Air Freight Forwarding

      2. 6.1.2 Sea Freight Forwarding

    2. 6.2 By Service

      1. 6.2.1 Freight Transport

      2. 6.2.2 Warehousing

      3. 6.2.3 Value-Added Services (Customs Clearance, Packaging, etc.)

    3. 6.3 Geography

      1. 6.3.1 North America

        1. United States

        2. Canada

        3. Mexico

      2. 6.3.2 Europe

        1. Germany

        2. France

        3. United Kingdom

        4. Netherlands

        5. Italy

        6. Rest of Europe

      3. 6.3.3 Asia-Pacific

        1. China

        2. Japan

        3. Australia

        4. India

        5. Singapore

        6. Malaysia

        7. Indonesia

        8. Vietnam

        9. South Korea

        10. Rest of Asia-Pacific

      4. 6.3.4 South America

        1. Brazil

        2. Chile

        3. Rest of South America

      5. 6.3.5 Middle East & Africa

        1. South Africa

        2. United Arab Emirates

        3. Saudi Arabia

        4. Qatar

        5. Rest of Middle East & Africa


    1. 7.1 Overview (Market Concentration, Major Players)

    2. 7.2 Company Profiles

      1. 7.2.1 Deutsche Post DHL Group (DHL Global Forwarding)

      2. 7.2.2 Kuehne + Nagel International AG

      3. 7.2.3 DB Schenker

      4. 7.2.4 Sinotrans Limited

      5. 7.2.5 DSV A/S

      6. 7.2.6 Expeditors International

      7. 7.2.7 Nippon Express Co., Ltd.

      8. 7.2.8 CEVA Logistics

      9. 7.2.9 United Parcel Service Inc.

      10. 7.2.10 Kintetsu World Express, Inc.

      11. 7.2.11 Bollore Logistics

      12. 7.2.12 C.H.Robinson Worldwide Inc.

      13. 7.2.13 Kerry Logistics Network Limited

      14. 7.2.14 Nippon Yusen Kabushiki Kaisha (Yusen Logistics Co. Ltd.)

      15. 7.2.15 Agility Logistics

    3. *List Not Exhaustive
    4. 7.3 Other companies (Key Information/Overview)

      1. 7.3.1 SNCF Logistics/Geodis, Hellmann Worldwide Logistics GmbH & Co. KG, XPO Logistics Inc., Hitachi Transport System Ltd., Toll Group, CJ Logistics Corporation, NNR Global Logistics, Pantos Logistics, FedEx Corporation*


  9. 9. APPENDIX

Related Reports