The online marketplace, which connects shippers with carriers, said it will use the financing it received through Sequoia Capital to help keep qualified drivers from leaving the industry by keeping them active.
NEXT Trucking, a Los Angeles area-based online marketplace that connects shippers with carriers, has received a $21 million cash infusion, which it said will be used to help keep qualified drivers from leaving the industry by keeping them active.
The new financing is through Sequoia Capital, a venture capital company based in the San Francisco Bay Area. As part of the transaction, Sequoia partner Omar Hamoui is joining NEXT Trucking’s board of directors.
“Logistics is at the very core of our economy, yet it faces some real challenges,” Hamoui said in a statement provided to American Shipper. “NEXT Trucking has created a marketplace powered by sophisticated technology that resolves many of the critical imbalances that exist between the shipper’s needs and driver’s availability.”
NEXT Trucking’s free marketplace app uses algorithms to connect shippers and experienced drivers based on routes, pricing, driver behavior and other factors.
NEXT Trucking is unique in the market, according to company CEO Lidia Yan, in that it is not only trucker-centric, but is aimed at helping truck owner-operators and mid-size truck fleets. Truckers dictate what they want and post their availability on the marketplace before connecting with shippers, as opposed to shippers providing load information to brokers who call various truckers to find the most affordable choice.
“Instead of letting the rapid decline of qualified carriers continue to and potentially destabilize our supply chain, and economy in general, we need to overhaul the way the industry works and empower the truckers,” Yan said. “We couldn’t watch this happen from the side of the road, so NEXT Trucking developed the first online marketplace that mitigates the negatives by building a strong, transparent community.”
Available loads are automatically matched to the vetted carriers based on preferences and predictive load offering technology.
The app, Yan told American Shipper, removes the hassle, cost and forced dispatching that small truck companies face when dealing with brokers, and also offers 48-hour quick pay and fuel advance options.
Carriers go through a screening process and are required to maintain a minimum of $100,000 in cargo insurance.
The marketplace gives shippers access to a virtual fleet of independent carriers and total visibility of all shipments via a shipment dashboard, which includes timelines, route information and cost summaries, locations and status of shipments.
Fleet managers also have access to NEXT Trucking’s management platform to book and dispatch loads, and share capacity within the network.
The marketplace’s focus is on California-based carriers and lanes to other states. NEXT Trucking, which was founded just over two years ago, already counts such shippers as Mitsu OSK Lines (MOL), Jakks Pacific, Japan Solar and Hitachi as users, Yan said.