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Broker vs. Freight Forwarder

In June 2017 we discussed the blurry line between and 4PL and LLP. Similar confusion can occur when discussing differences between a broker and freight forwarder.  

The APICS Dictionary, 15th edition, defines the following key terms:

Broker

‘An organization that helps match carriers to freight, adding value by helping the shipper and carrier obtain better rates and more fully utilize their capacity and equipment.’

Freight Forwarder

‘The “middle man” between the carrier and the organization shipping the product. Often combines smaller shipments to take advantage of lower bulk costs.’

Reading further in the CLTD learning system I prefer associating the term “middle man” to a broker than to a freight forwarder. A broker is primarily serving as matchmaker between a...

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