Ocean visibility provider Terminal49 announced it has closed a $6.5 million Series A round led by Stage 2 Capital and Grand Venture Partners as the company looks to ramp up its technology offerings to compete in the growing real-time visibility space.
“Visibility tools will be table stakes technology for importers, truckers and customs brokers,” Akshay Dodeja, Terminal49’s co-founder and chief executive officer, told FreightWaves. “Although, they don’t want to just track containers. They want to figure out what containers they need to focus on to avoid problems. That’s what we do really well. So we want to lean into that and build an automated, collaboration platform.”
Terminal49 has a much different origin story than other visibility providers, as the company entered the industry in California as a drayage trucking company near the Port of Oakland. Direct port relationships allowed the company to build integrations with all U.S. and Canadian ports early in its platform’s development, with data integrations with the Port of Southampton and London Gateway terminals in the U.K. on the horizon.
Dodeja said because of these early port relationships, Terminal49 has a leg up in the market.
“Most extra costs are incurred when containers get stuck at the port,” said Dodeja. “Every single visibility provider is providing [ocean] carrier milestones. Although, the information needed to avoid those extra costs is not made available from those carriers, it’s available from the ports and terminals.”
|Funding amount||$6.5 million|
|Funding round||Series A|
|Lead investor||Stage 2 Capital and Grand Venture Partners|
|Secondary investors||Initialized Capital, Afore Capital, Liquid2 Capital, Immad Akhud (Mercury CEO), James Tamplin (Firebase CEO) and Kyle Vogt (Cruise CEO)|
|Business goals for the round||Build up development team and leverage investor relations for exponential sales growth|
|Total funding||$8.7 million|
Leveraging those port and terminal relationships has enabled Terminal49 to become a data pipeline for customers including Trade XCelerators, Hillebrand, Mazda USA, Next Trucking, and Jaguar Freight.
“Terminal49 has made our team more efficient and productive,” said Spencer Strader, co-founder and CEO of Trade XCelerators, in Thursday’s funding announcement. “We now have access to accurate ocean freight information in one place, which lets us proactively share reliable information with our customers and vendors. Terminal49’s automation has saved us thousands of dollars a year, but more importantly it’s helped improve customer trust.”
Most important to Dodeja, this raise gives the company investor relationships that will help Terminal49 grow its teams to accelerate company growth.
“Bringing on partners will help me learn more and help the company level up,” he explained. “I now have supply chain experts at my table as well as go-to-market experts, which is a great win for us.”
In addition to investing, Dan Heck, a partner at Stage 2 Capital, will become a Terminal49 board member.
“We are excited to support Akshay and Terminal49 on their journey to automate global trade. They have built a product that customers value and that hundreds of organizations rely on to manage ever-increasing complexity and costs within their global supply chains,” Heck said.