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Nuvocargo targets Mexico growth with new hires

Startup’s expansion geared toward reaching goal of optimizing supply chains through technology

Nuvocargo has had strong sales throughout the year, with more shippers embracing technology to move goods between Mexico and the United States, officials said. (Photo: FreightWaves Staff)

Nuvocargo’s meteoric growth continues with four new hires aimed at expanding the company’s global reach. 

The recent hires follow strong sales throughout the year, largely due to more shippers embracing technology to move goods between Mexico and the United States, said Deepak Chhugani, founder and CEO of Nuvocargo.

“We continued to grow at revenues above 35% month-over-month for over a year; that’s a pretty aggressive clip,” Chhugani said. “We think that’s exciting growth, something in that range will continue next year.” 

Chhugani founded New York-based Nuvocargo in August 2019 as a digital marketplace for door-to-door freight transportation, serving trade routes between the U.S. and Mexico.

Nuvocargo is a digital freight forwarder and customs broker for U.S.-Mexico trade. (Photo: Nuvocargo)

The company’s marketplace aims to help shippers coordinate cross-border transportation with carriers, including procuring trucks on both sides of the border. The platform also includes customs clearance, insurance and trade financing.

Nuvocargo’s clients range from multibillion-dollar companies in construction, food, beverages and spirits, to fast-growing, early stage startups.

Chhugani said the coronavirus pandemic has shown people how valuable technology can be to keep cross-border operations running when companies can’t be at a location in person.

“We think if you’re betting long term on the future, it’s going to be online, it’s going to be a more digitally enabled experience,” Chhugani said. “It’s safer that way. If you have the right security in place, online innovation is going to reach logistics, especially cross-border trade. But it will take time. That’s why our model, Nuvocargo, we think the way that we’re building the platform allows for that transition.”

In March, Nuvocargo acquired Oncarriage, an Atlanta-based customs broker and third-party logistics provider. In April, Nuvocargo announced it had raised $5.3 million in seed money from both sides of the U.S.-Mexico border, including Silicon Valley-based NFX and Mexico City-based ALLVP.

Since 2019, Chhugani and his team have grown from a handful of employees to 25 people. The company also has an office in Mexico City.

The company’s newest hires include Anaid Chacon as head of product; Antonio Echevarria as director of sales; Hector Ruiz as director of operations; and Luis Eduardo Torres as head of finance and business operations.

Chacon said she was drawn to a company with a strong vision for improving cross-border business.

“One of the things that attracted me to Nuvocargo is the quality of the leadership team,” Chacon said. “And honestly, being a Mexican person, giving myself the opportunity to do something that had such a personal connection to my own personal background, and also has this intent of modernizing the industry and bringing in new capabilities that simplify people’s work, is what’s also super compelling.” 

Chacon grew up near the U.S.-Mexico border and studied electronic engineering at the Monterrey Institute of Technology in Monterrey, Mexico.

After receiving her master’s in information technology management from Harvard, Chacon became an early employee at Dropbox, working as a lead product manager and helping the company scale from fewer than 200 employees to thousands.

At Nuvocargo, Chacon will lead the development of the company’s proprietary software solutions.

Chacon said one of the challenges for people who manage logistics operations is that sometimes they are part of a larger business, and “their core business is not to be shipping things.”

“What we want to be able to do for [clients] as a mobile marketplace was offer that we are here to help them, allow them to let us take care of all that for them and have everything in one place so that they can rely on us to move whatever goods that they have worked really hard to produce and know that they are actually going to make it to their destination, and that they’re always going to get the right information from us,” Chacon said. 

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Noi Mahoney

Noi Mahoney is a Texas-based journalist who covers cross-border trade, logistics and supply chains for FreightWaves. He graduated from the University of Texas at Austin with a degree in English in 1998. Mahoney has more than 20 years experience as a journalist, working for newspapers in Florida, Maryland and Texas. Contact [email protected]