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Israel’s Freightos buys Barcelona’s WebCargoNet

Multi-million dollar deal will create world’s largest database of freight prices and routes, Jerusalem-based firm says

Shoshanna Solomon is The Times of Israel's Startups and Business reporter

Freightos' online marketplace for international freight (Courtesy
Freightos' online marketplace for international freight (Courtesy

Jerusalem-based Freightos, which in July said it set up the world’s first online marketplace for international freight, said on Wednesday that it has acquired WebCargoNet, a Barcelona based air-cargo rate management provider.

WebCargoNet helps bring air cargo companies online with automated freight routing and pricing, and will complement Freightos’ efforts to do the same for air, ocean and trucking, the company said in a statement.

The result, said Eytan Buchman, the marketing director of the Israeli company, will create the “world’s largest freight Big Data database of over 200 million data points,” helping more companies take part in the online freight marketplace offered by the Jerusalem-based company.

“In under 10 years, WebCargoNet has made a huge impact on air freight technology,” Buchman said.

Freightos’s web 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.

Freightos marketing director Eytan Buchman (Courtesy)
Freightos marketing director Eytan Buchman (Courtesy)

 

The database of air, ocean and land freight prices for international and domestic routes, will be leveraged “to help companies ship goods at increased savings,” Buchman said.

“These are really interesting times for companies in the logistics technology space; our acquisition points to a degree of maturity and consolidation in this field.”

Buchman valued the deal in the “multi-million euros range” and WebCargoNet holders also got shares in Freightos.

Freightos will finance the acquisition both with money it raised from investors and revenues from customers in light of “the solid growth” the company has had in the past five years, Buchman said.

Freightos, incorporated in Hong Kong, has to date raised $23.3 million from venture funds.Global investment in logistics and supply chain companies surged to $378 million in 2015, from just $43 million in 2013 and $83 million in 2012, according to data compiled by CB Insights, an New York-based data company, and provided by Freightos.

“Passenger travel booking went online half a century ago. Today, WebCargoNet has finally done the same for air cargo, and shares Freightos’ vision of frictionless global trade,” Zvi Schreiber, the founder and CEO of Freightos, said in the statement. “This strategic consolidation of technologies is a sure signal that the logistics technology industry is ripe for growth. Combining these two technologies takes us a step closer to bringing freight shipping online and into the 21st century for companies big and small.”

Freightos’ software-as-a-service technology enables instant freight quotes for international freight forwarders including CEVA Logistics and Nippon Express and also offers freight rate management and pricing and routing optimization for supply chain companies like Sysco Foods, Panasonic USA, and Marks & Spencer.

Joining Freightos will bring WebCargoNet the size and capacity to “rapidly advance the technologies we are bringing to market,” Manuel Galindo, CEO of WebCargoNet said. “Together we continue to make freight quoting and booking online a reality.”

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