Silicon Valley startup launches fully automated shipping platform

 (Photo: Screenshot of the Opus9 platform provided by Opus9)

(Photo: Screenshot of the Opus9 platform provided by Opus9)

Opus9 launched its digital platform, automating every step of the truckload and LTL shipping process, Tuesday. The new platform is intended to “digitize an old industry and bring it forward,” according to Vice President of Product Management Jeff Hiller.

The Silicon Valley-based startup spent the past year operating as a traditional 3PL, but this new platform is intended to remove the barriers of entry for shippers of all sizes and provide flexibility for carriers. The company plans to do this by utilizing its proprietary real-time pricing algorithm to offer instant pricing to shippers and bid opportunities to carriers without requiring them to log into an account.

“Traditionally, transaction prices, which constantly fluctuate, are voiced out by brokers. These intermediary points of contact are mostly operating through phone calls and physical paperwork, preventing fluidity,” a media release from Opus9 reads.

Opus9 eliminates that intermediary position, and the the slowdown that accompanies it, by digitizing and automating the entire process. The new platform quotes, books, tracks and handles payment for freight.

“Our innovation and creativity lies not only in the simplicity of the service, but also in the highest level of sales and operation efficiency which reduces human effort cost by 30 percent. In order to achieve this goal, we have automated the process from quotes to payment.“ Alex Ryu, founder and CEO of Opus9, said.

Hiller said eliminating the phone calls for tracking and payment will facilitate savings on both sides of the fence.

The platform allows shippers to book up to six days in advance, and same day pickup is available for both truckload and LTL shipments if placed before a certain time. It also provides real-time tracking and sends shippers notifications when shipments may be delayed.

The automated pricing systems opens the door for small and mid-sized companies to ship competitively, regardless of shipping schedules, according to the media release.

Opus9 describes itself as “carrier-centric,” offering both flexible and reliable job opportunities. The platform allows carriers to set their own rates and bid as they see fit. It also allows truckers to choose their preferred lanes.

The company is committed to getting transactions wrapped up quickly, and getting money in the hands of carriers sooner.

“We’re trying to wrap everything up within a week of proof of delivery. The carriers love that a lot,” Hiller said. “That gives tremendous advantage to those carriers. It allows them to manage their cash flow better, and they’re not used to that. They’re used to 30-day, 60-day, sometimes 120-day payments.”

Opus9’s new platform has been beta tested by shippers, and selected carriers have already enrolled in the network.

Opus9's vision is to offer end-to-end multimodal transportation services to shippers in parallel with geographic expansion over the next three years, according to the company’s media release.