Israeli smart freight firm to list on Nasdaq via SPAC merger at $500m valuation
Jerusalem-based Freightos’s online booking and payment marketplace allows businesses to compare, book and manage air and ocean freight services
Sharon Wrobel is a tech reporter for The Times of Israel.
Freightos, a Jerusalem-based smart freight booking and payment platform, will start trading on Nasdaq on Thursday through a merger with a special purpose acquisition company (SPAC) at a valuation of $500 million.
The firm is listing on Nasdaq after closing its merger with Gesher I Acquisition Corp., a publicly traded SPAC. The combined company will be called Freightos Limited and will start trading on Nasdaq under the new symbol CRGO. In June, the two parties first announced the merger agreement to list Freightos at a pro forma enterprise value of about $435 million.
Freightos said it raised over $80 million in capital through the transaction, including $10 million from Qatar Airways, the world’s largest air cargo carrier, and $60 million from M&G Investments and the Prudential Assurance Co.
The funds will be “invested in further scaling the business, to increase transaction growth and revenue and to further develop the technology stack, to drive additional value for customers, and improve margins,” the firm said in a statement.
“Going public through the combination with Gesher and raising capital is designed to fuel our aggressive efforts to scale our booking and payment platform and enhance our leadership position,” said Freightos CEO Zvi Schreiber.
Founded in 2012, Freightos’s global booking and payment web platform has emerged as an online marketplace for international air and ocean freight. The platform allows businesses to get instant comparisons, booking, and management of services from multiple logistics providers, thus bringing technology to an industry in which much of the work had been done manually and which had very little price transparency.
“Modernizing global freight is a large unmet need of the global economy,” said M&G portfolio manager Carl Vine. “Freightos, with its superior marketplace technology, is winning rapid commercial adoption.”
Schreiber said that the firm concluded an “outstanding” year in 2022, “despite declining freight rates and volumes, demonstrating the power of digitalizing one of the last large offline industries.”
Freightos technology digitizes freight operations for over 10,000 logistics providers and global supply chain companies, including hundreds of airlines, ocean liners and trucking carriers, including American Airlines, Air Canada Cargo, China Southern Airlines, Emirates SkyCargo, and LATAM Cargo.
In 2022, the firm recorded 700,000 digital booking transactions, representing an increase of 54% from the previous year. The transactions generated $600 million in gross booking value, the company said. In the fourth quarter of 2022, the number of bookings more than doubled to 211,000 compared with the same period a year earlier, the company said.
Existing shareholders in Freightos include the Singapore Exchange Ltd., a subsidiary of FedEx Corp.; Qatar Airways; IAG Cargo, the cargo division of International Airlines Group (which includes British Airways and Iberia); LATAM Airlines Group; and other financial investors such as Aleph and MoreVC.