Sector news for November 2019

This month, the sector is bursting with news about Artificial Intelligence and other smart innovations. Read about Hema’s predictive AI software, the announcement of a Belgian pilot project with autonomous trains, the importance of data for society, the profitability of a municipal rental depot, and how Chinese webshops are tackling their greatest challenge. Click on the articles for more details.

#1 Hema uses AI to improve fine-tuning of forecasts with reality

Hema wants to be a pioneer when it comes to forecasting software. The retailer is counting on JDA solutions that use Artificial Intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) to improve the predictability of the supply chain. You can read more about how Hema uses AI to improve predictions at

#2 Infrabel considers a pilot project with self-driving train

Infrabel dreams of self-driving trains according to their business plan, which was recently approved by its board of directors. The rail network operator is preparing a pilot project with autonomous trains. If you don’t want to wait years for more details, you can read the article about the potential pilot project with self-driving trains on the Belgian rail network at

#3 Data specialist Felix Van de Maele on the importance of AI

Data is the invisible network behind your personal information. And that is big business. Felix Van de Maele knows this well as he is the CEO of Collibra, a software company specialising in data processing for corporations. In De Tijd Vooruit’s second podcast, he reveals how you can best prepare for the data age and why artificial intelligence will decide on your job or loan.

#4 Making expensive rental depots profitable

The quicker the time to transport from the municipal depot to the delivery address, the quicker the delivery times and the lower the costs. You can read about this in the report ‘Last Link, Quantifying the Cost’ authored by real estate agent Cushman & Wakefield. According to the research, the higher rental cost of municipal depots pays for itself. Read more about the profitability of municipal rental depots for e-commerce at

#5 Chinese webshops face their biggest challenge

Singles Day, the Chinese equivalent of Black Friday, exposes the challenges for Chinese e-commerce players. First and foremost is the collaboration with logistics service providers that must transport their products to less populated and remote areas. But China would not be China if it had not come up with new strategies, technologies, and deals with local partners. Read more about the challenge faced by Chinese e-commerce players in the English language article on