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Freightos acquires air cargo rate provider WebCargoNet

Online freight rate marketplace Freightos acquired air cargo management provider WebCargoNet, which will provide Freightos with a broader range of airfreight rates to complement its existing database of air and ocean rates.

   The online freight rate marketplace Freightos on Wednesday acquired the air cargo management provider WebCargoNet for an undisclosed amount.
   Barcelona-based WebCargoNet will provide Hong Kong-based Freightos with a broader range of airfreight rates to complement its existing database of air and ocean rates. Freightos launched its marketplace in late July, with the target of providing shippers and forwarders an Expedia-type model to connect transactionaly.
   The company has secured more than $23 million in four rounds of investor funding, including $14 million alone in September 2015.
   Freightos will retain the independent WebCargoNet brand, and the airfreight rates are also intended to complement Freightos’ AcceleRate freight rate management solution.
   “There will be no immediate changes to current offerings of either company,” Freightos said in a statement. “Over time, strategic synergies will be leveraged to provide more comprehensive and innovative online solutions to carriers, forwarders and shippers.”
   The acquisition involves both cash and Freightos shares, the company said.
   “Passenger travel booking went online half a century ago,” said Zvi Schreiber, founder and chief executive officer of Freightos. “Today, WebCargoNet has finally done the same for air cargo, and shares Freightos’ vision of frictionless global trade. This strategic consolidation of technologies is a sure signal that the logistics technology industry is ripe for growth. Combining these two technologies takes us a step closer to bringing freight shipping online and into the 21st century for companies big and small.”
   Freightos’ marketplace is designed initially to help small and medium-sized shippers price shop for forwarders on a neutral platform. The platform at present includes rates from around a dozen forwarders, mainly on the transpacific trade.
   “Joining Freightos brings WebCargoNet instant scale and the capacity to rapidly advance the technologies we are bringing to market,” said Manuel Galindo, chief executive officer of WebCargoNet. “Hundreds of global forwarders and dozens of air carriers are sure to benefit as together we continue to make freight quoting and booking online a reality.”