For Immediate Release
May 21, 2002


Humanitarian Logistics Software being Designed for Red Cross Red Crescent

GENEVA and SAN FRANCISCO - The world's largest humanitarian network, the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies, is collaborating with the renowned US-based Fritz Institute in the design of a state-of-the-art, web-based humanitarian logistics software. Fritz Institute will customize its proprietary logistics software following intensive study of the Federation's logistics needs.

A Fritz Institute team of logistics and software experts is now at work in the Federation's Geneva Secretariat to tailor the software, which will enable the organization and its 178 member Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies to provide unparalleled support to emergency relief operations anywhere in the world.

"What we are getting is the very latest in logistics technology, a web-based system that will take our current processes and connect all steps of the logistics chain from the launch of an emergency appeal through procurement, donations, warehousing and distribution to disaster victims. It's a very exciting development and a wonderful illustration of the synergy that can be created between the private sector and humanitarian agencies," said Didier Cherpitel, Secretary General of the International Federation.

The Humanitarian Logistics Software will standardize and automate the relief mobilization process, providing more control and visibility. Delays in sourcing emergency relief materials will be reduced by eliminating paper trails of supply locations and creating a central repository for supply information. The final result will be the ability to track donations through the entire mobilization supply chain up to the point of receipt of the materials at the disaster site. The humanitarian logistics software is being fully funded by the Fritz Institute.

"On a practical level what this means is that our response to disasters will be much more efficient and effective. We will be able to provide better service delivery to disaster victims because we will have faster access to information on what is in the relief pipe-line and where exactly the relief materials are located," said Cherpitel.

"Fritz Institute commissioned research about disaster relief resources and needs worldwide and learned that humanitarian agencies on the ground during disasters lacked access to the latest technologies available in the private sector to facilitate the logistics of emergency relief to victims. It became our objective to provide agencies, like the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies, with access to the best practices and technologies available," said Lynn C. Fritz, a logistics pioneer and founder of the San Francisco-based Institute, which brings together business best practices, technology and academic research to augment the capabilities of humanitarian organizations in disaster relief.

The Fritz Institute was created to bring together business best practices,
technology and academic research to augment the capabilities of humanitarian organizations engaged in disaster relief around the globe. By creating a worldwide network of scholars to research best practices and providing access to state-of-the-art technology from the commercial arena, Fritz Institute aims to facilitate the effective delivery of disaster relief.

Lynn C. Fritz founded the Fritz Institute. A pioneer in the global logistics industry, Fritz was the Chairman and CEO of the Fritz Companies Inc. until May 2001 when it was acquired by UPS Inc. Under his leadership, Fritz Companies was transformed from a family owned domestic documentation company to a global organization of 10,000 employees in 120 countries.

For further information about Fritz Institute, as well as disaster relief resources, visit

The Federation has 178 member Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies
around the world. It is the world's largest humanitarian network and has responded to thousands of disasters worldwide since its inception in 1919. Its core work areas are disaster response, disaster preparedness, health and care in the community, and the promotion of its humanitarian principles and values. Among the emergencies which it is currently responding to are food shortages in southern Africa; rehabilitation needs in India following an earthquake last year which killed 20,000 people; floods in Peru; and tuberculosis in Russia.

The Federation, National Societies and the International Committee of the Red Cross together constitute the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement. For further information on Federation activities visit

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