In Africa and the Middle East, most firms within the freight business nonetheless use old school strategies comparable to spreadsheets, telephone calls and emails to handle their shipments. They are digital but handbook processes that make their work very inefficient.
While incumbents have pioneered varied enterprise useful resource planning (ERP) techniques to digitize these processes, firms would nonetheless get 4 to 5 completely different software platforms to full a number of duties.
Ideally, stakeholders on this business — from producers and distributors to retailers and logistics suppliers — require a single software that connects them with their whole transport ecosystem, subsequently reducing time and value.
Freterium, a startup primarily based in Morocco, is one such firm offering this software, and it has raised $4 million in seed to scale across the nation and into surrounding areas.
San Fransisco-based investor Partech led the spherical. CDG Invest, Y Combinator, Flexport, Swiss Founders Fund, Outlierz Ventures, and some angel buyers from the U.S., Europe, Asia, and Africa participated.
There are different firms addressing varied points inside the MENA’s freight and logistics area, significantly Egypt. Some are marketplaces or brokerage platforms connecting shippers with vans, comparable to Trella. Others like ShipBlu and Flextock play within the e-commerce success section and cater to last-mile and warehousing wants. But SaaS options to handle the stream of those shipments, collaborate internally with completely different departments inside the firm comparable to gross sales, customer support, finance and accounting, and mixture information from a number of ERP techniques are few and much between.
And that’s what Freterium, a YC-backed startup launched in 2020, is making an attempt to construct: a holistic method to fixing important backend challenges of the freight business.
“We’re building a logistics operating system to allow the shippers, our customers to manage all of their domestic shipments on a single interface. So we connect organizations, people and technologies across the entire logistics value chain,” stated CEO Mehdi Cherif Alami.
“And our main product is transport management software for shippers enables multi-enterprise collaboration. But also, very importantly, it’s platform-agnostic. So we are a neutral software that plays nice with everyone. We’re kind of the Switzerland of logistics, in that sense.”
Alami and CPO Omar El Kouhene beforehand labored in consulting and logistics for firms like McKinsey, PwC, OCP Group and Strategy& (previously Booz & Company) across Africa and the Middle East. According to Alami, the corporate’s Transport Management Software permits firms within the freight business to handle shipments from the port to the manufacturing facility, then merchandise from the manufacturing facility to the warehouses, B2B prospects and finally finish prospects.
Here’s an illustration of how the corporate’s software works: Say you order a TV from an digital home equipment retailer with Freterium software built-in into its e-commerce web site. The software informs the shopper when they are going to obtain the TV on behalf of Freterium. But behind the scenes, the software helps the retailer verify many transferring items to make sure that the supply is carried out optimally. Some of the parameters it research contain the provision of vans, the very best route to attain the shopper, and evaluating cheaper and extra environment friendly choices between utilizing an in-house or third-party courier.
Beyond the planning half, Freterium software helps with the execution and monitoring by sharing the cargo data with events concerned within the transaction. And after the bundle has been delivered, retailers can management invoices from the supply suppliers, analyze the efficiency and high quality of service, and get insights on inefficiencies inside their group.
In its first full 12 months since launch, Freterium onboarded greater than 20 enterprise prospects, rising 35% month over month, in accordance to the CEO. More than 3,000 customers additionally make the most of its software.
While incumbents have excessive implementation prices and lengthy set up intervals, which might span months, Freeterium claims retailers can set up its platform in below every week with no upfront prices. Upon set up, enterprise prospects pay between $100 to $1,000 a month, relying on their dimension.
“We have been looking closely at the freight trucking market in Africa and the Middle East for the past five years, a market worth $250 billion. 85% of the volume is carried through established legacy partnerships between shippers and carriers and still run with manual, inefficient tools,” Partech common associate Cyril Collon stated in regards to the funding.
“Freterium has built a holistic approach to solving the key challenges of the industry and we are excited to support them in their mission to empower manufacturers, retailers and logistics teams across Africa.”
The spherical makes Freterium one of many most-funded startups within the rising Moroccan ecosystem. Only B2B e-commerce startup Chari and proptech Mubawab has raised extra just lately.
Alami stated the funds will be used to spend money on the corporate’s R&D, rent extra expertise to double the present dimension of its workforce inside the subsequent 12 months, market its software, and develop across Egypt, Saudi Arabia and the UAE.