Forty freight-tech innovators joined us on stage at day one of MarketWaves18 to present live product demos, showing off the latest in emerging technology that’s driving the freight industry. We challenged our Demo Day participants to provide quick-fire presentations highlighting hands-on technologies that real drivers and users are interacting with on a day-to-day basis.
Representing some of the most dynamic and disruptive technologies in the market today, demos from Shipwell, J.B. Hunt, Redwood Logistics, and Platform Science took top honors as they were voted Best in Show by MarketWaves18 attendees.
Shipwell—founded in 2016—debuted their newest technology at MarketWaves18. Much of Shipwell’s core technology centers around creating a seamless customer experience and in driving efficiency through the freight shipping process. During Demo Day, the company showcased an artificial intelligence powered tool that assists with workflow automation. The AI engine analyzes data produced during the shipment process, with it finding ways to reduce human error through the shipment lifecycle. The tool gathers data points to understand shipments that fall outside normality, for instance, delayed shipments or shipments with variance issues, and looks to evolve the platform to react more proactively and build a positive shipping experience for its customers.
J.B. Hunt’s (NASDAQ: JBHT) Head of Innovation Mark Brewer showed off the third version of J.B. Hunt 360, the online platform connecting trucks to loads. J.B. Hunt 360, launched in April 2017, is part of the company’s ongoing commitment to providing improved workflows, tighter integration, mobile tools and constant innovation. J.B. Hunt 360 makes the process of bidding on a load, accepting it, transporting it, and getting paid simpler and faster. The application also automatically alerts drivers to potential detention situations and is able to read scanned documents.
Redwood Logistics, which has been in business for 17 years, provides coast-to-coast coverage and a holistic approach to serving customers that combines expertise in moving freight where it needs to go, managing customer supply chains with flexible engagement and providing technical solutions that unlock the knowledge needed to maximize the value of their businesses. RedwoodConnect, in market for 5 years and most recently updated in the last three months, is a next-generation cloud native supply chain connectivity platform that rapidly bridges the API gap and centralizes the data integration flow between partners, customers and suppliers. Visualizing high-value supply chain metrics in real-time is also a reality with RedwoodInsight. RedwoodInsight utilizes RedwoodConnect’s high-speed, high-throughput data warehousing layer to transform and load data within minutes allowing customers to pull insight from their supply chain as it happens.
On Demo Day, Darrin Demchuck of Platform Science reviewed the company's IoT fleet management program and its numerous features, including what he said was an ability to customize it to a specific driver "on the fly." In business for 4 years, Platform Science only recently launched the program it showcased. Its features on compliance also include state-by-state provisions to add to the flexibility, so for example, it will reflect California's unique rules that drivers must abide by. Platform Science was also one of several presenters that effectively reminded the audience that paper is a ways from being out of the trucking compliance system; Demchuck demonstrated the tool's ability to scan and consume paper documents.
FreightWaves spoke with Demo Day Best in Show winners to get a taste of the experience and outcome of their 7-minute demos.
“At MarketWaves18, FreightWaves is giving companies a great opportunity for exposure as well as the ability to put products directly in front of industry peers and customers,” said Jake Field, co-founder of Platform Science. “We appreciate the recognition, but our ultimate goal is that we, and other companies, can raise the bar for innovative products in the industry as a whole,” Field concluded.
Eric Rempel, CIO at Redwood Logistics, explained that Demo Day wasn’t just an exciting way to get out of the office—it also gave Redwood Logistics a chance to speak directly to peers and competitors and to steer their product roadmap. “Our demo represented the core of what we do. With our demo, we wanted to showcase the art of the possible--to gauge how we can help partners by exposing them to what is normally an abstract process,” Rempel stated.
“For us, Demo Day validated that there’s interest in what we’re doing: fixing freight now. We’re solving a real need, and there are viable and technical solutions to problems we see in the market" said Andy Rouse, Senior Product Manager at Shipwell.
“J.B. Hunt is proud to be included among these innovative companies,” said Shelley Simpson, executive vice president and chief commercial officer of J.B. Hunt. “To be in the Freight.Tech25 and win Best in Show at Demo Day represents our effort to create the most efficient transportation network in North America by leveraging our experience and technology.”