Next Trucking, which matches shippers and truck carriers through an online marketplace, announced today that it has raised $21 million in funding, in a round led by Sequoia Capital. Previous investors also joined, but the startup declined to disclose which ones.
Founded in 2015 in Lynwood, California, Next Trucking connects truck carriers directly with shippers based on routes, pricing, driver behavior, and more. The concept seems much more efficient than the traditional method, which is based on shippers providing load information to brokers, who then call several truck carriers to find the cheapest option.
“The big issue facing the industry is the high turnover rate (over 97 percent) for drivers on the road based on low pay and forced dispatching,” wrote Next Trucking cofounder and CEO Lidia Yan, in an email to VentureBeat. “Our goal is to cut down on driving inefficiency, which currently sees over 40 percent of capacity wasted with drivers holding empty trailers.”
Any eligible full truck load carrier can sign up for free to use the platform, according to Yan, as long as they meet Next Trucking’s insurance, safety, and service requirements. A mobile app is also available on both iOS and Android.
According to Next Trucking, there are more than 10,000 truck carriers and hundreds of shippers that are using the platform. Shippers include Pioneer, Hisense, Jinko Solar, and Jakks Pacific. Next Trucking takes a commission from each transaction, which is adjustable based on seasonality.
The system, like many others in the shared economy, is based on reviews. “We vet applicants with an implemented background check,” wrote Yan. “If the drivers receive three bad reviews, they are blocked.”
Other players in this sector include Uber Freight and Convoy, which also offer digital freight matching capabilities.
To date, Next Trucking has raised a total of $28 million. It will use the fresh injection of capital to further develop the product, ramp up operations and marketing, and expand to new markets in the U.S.
The startup currently has 45 employees.