• TPM21
  • 25 February - 3 March 2021 | A Virtual TPM Experience
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Mark Szakonyi

IHS Markit

Executive Editor, JOC, Maritime & Trade

Mark Szakonyi leads the JOC editorial team, consisting of a global team of journalists and researchers covering the container shipping industry. His analysis and work have been quoted in general news media including the BBC, The Economist, PBS Nightly Business Report, NPR, Al Jazeera International, South China Morning Post, and USA Today. He speaks regularly at industry events and helps plan and moderate JOC events, leads JOC’s shipper roundtables, and chairs the JOC Canada Trade Conference. He has bachelor’s degrees in political science and English from Elmhurst College and a master’s in journalism from the University of Missouri.

SESSIONS WITH Mark Szakonyi

Thursday, February 25

  • 02:45pm - 03:05pm

    Adapting To New Ocean Shipping Dynamics

    Shipper Perspectives: Balancing Cost Pressure and the Need for Container Shipping Agility

    With more Americans prioritizing comfort while they work from home, combined with high-profile collaborations with musicians, brands, and cultural icons, casual footwear provider Crocs is experiencing a resurgence in demand. But the unexpected rush in sandals and other footwear pushed the limits of minimum quantity commitments within the importer’s annual service contracts, challenging Crocs to lean on-forwarder partners and negotiate for carriers to get more space. Like many logistics managers at retailers, Mary McNelly, director of global logistics for Crocs, is trying to balance cost pressure and a need for more agile capacity and reliable service for 2021. In this one-on-one discussion, McNelly will share how she’s approaching 2021 in terms of service contracting to inventory management, and what she’s pressing her transportation providers to address.

Monday, March 1

  • 01:00pm - 01:45pm

    Adapting To New Ocean Shipping Dynamics

    Trans-Pacific 2021: Redefining the Future

    Amid the wild and unanticipated swing from plummeting Asia imports to record volumes that pushed the annual peak season into the final days of the year, one thing on the eastbound trans-Pacific has stayed consistent: carriers’ control over capacity and the pricing power that’s resulted. Importers aren’t alone in struggling to get space for record e-commerce demand. Exporters also are finding it harder to get space as the widening spread between inbound and outbound rates spurred carriers to prioritize higher-paying imports. The questions now are less about whether carriers will exercise capacity control but to what extent and whether the import growth will lose steam gradually or rapidly. For US exporters, the difference in the spot costs of inbound and outbound shipping has never been a better predictor of the service levels. And with the Biden administration signaling a more focused approach to trade talks with China, there’s the external wildcard of a potential easing of tariffs on exporters and importers alike. Within the industry, there are also promising signs in terms of new expedited and premium services. But carriers will have to show broader improvements in reliability on the water and to a lesser degree on the ground, or risk a shipper and even regulatory backlash. Among the takeaways you can expect from this critical TPM21 session are:

    • How much capacity is trans-Pacific carriers adding and how does that match up with growth forecasts?

    • What major challenges do carriers, shippers, and forwarders face in 2021?

    • What have been the service challenges and causes, and will they recede or worsen in 2021?

    • What are the risks if carriers don’t improve service, and in what areas are they making inroads on service improvement? 

Tuesday, March 2