19/9/2018 – EcoTruck, a logistics startup based in Ho Chi Minh city said that it has raised a US$1.7 million pre-Series A funding, which will be used for enhancing their platform and talent recruitment.
South Korean investors Nextrans, FuturePlay, Access Ventures LLC participated in the round, along with Viet Capital Ventures, a newly established investment firm associated with IDG Ventures Vietnam’s vice president Pham Hop Pho.
The startup had also previously raised US$300,000 in its seed round. With this bridge round, the startup had so far raised an accumulated funding capital of about US$2 million.
Founded in 2017, EcoTruck acts as a middleman between merchants and logistic operations. Its platform works with more than 90 logistics vendors in Vietnam, who are managing 700 container trucks in two hubs: Hai Phong and Ho Chi Minh City.
Its centralized platform leverages the sharing economy model and data intelligence to lower costs and streamline operations.
This provides a viable solution to the logistics industry which is challenged by poor infrastructure, large inventory, and an outdated process which still involve manual paperwork and emails to facilitate calls to conduct.
The industry is even plagued of corruption where there are kickbacks between supply chain employees and logistics vendors, which unnecessarily drive up operating and shipping cost. According to Le, these inefficiencies cost merchants 25 percent of their revenue to offsetting logistics cost.
“With technologies and the right business model for a much bigger scale, EcoTruck can operate with a much lower cost, resulting in much lower end prices of goods,” said Hoang Anh. adding that the service provided by EcoTruck has helped reduce logistics costs for its partners as much as 20 percent.
The platform also provides various data analytics and insight which includes suggesting the most suitable vendor to dispatch the merchant’s freight or calculating the most optimized delivery route. Besides, merchants can select their preferred logistics vendors who are bidding for their job as per to their own criteria.
Meanwhile, for logistics operators, EcoTruck allows them to maximize their truckload, helping them to increase their revenue, while merchants can save time on having to manage shipping processes that were lengthy and complex, as well as reduce their transportation expenditure through their transparent bidding system.
So far, EcoTruck claims that there are 80 merchants who use their portal regularly. These businesses transport a range of goods including fertilizer, rubber, frozen fruit and vegetables, bioproducts and even more delicate and hazardous cargo like chemicals.
The startup completed 820 orders in August 2018 and even recorded a trucking GMV of US$130,000 in August while its trucking revenue stood at US$6,500. It also earned an additional US$2500 in revenue, providing other services including customs and freight booking.