During the pandemic, the digitisation of the freight industry took off like a rocket, and stayed that way. To date, Forto has raised almost $600 million, Nuvocargo $75 million, Zencargo $66 million, and Freightify $14.5 million. All are associated with streamlining/digitising freight logistics in some way.
This meant, of course that freight forwarders and customs brokers also had to keep up. Back in 2021 Vector.ai (which launched in 2017) raised a $15 million A-round led by Bessemer to apply machine learning to automate these tasks.
Two years on and Vector is now called Raft, and that machine-learning has handily been re-branded to “artificial intelligence”.
Raft has now closed a $30 million Series B funding round led by the Eight Roads VC with participation from existing investors Bessemer Venture Partners, Episode 1, and Dynamo Ventures, as well as Moguntia Capital.
Founded in 2017, Raft says it now helps logistics players apply AI to their tasks and customer interactions. It now has offices in the UK, India, and the US, Raft’s customers include EMO Trans, OIA Global, The Scarbrough Group, NNR Global Logistics, and Navia Freight.
“We recognized early on the pain points around accounts payable reconciliation and customs entry preparation, and we’ve since grown the product to help automate areas such as warehousing, booking confirmations, and more,” said James Coombes, CEO and Co-Founder in a statement.
Raft also has a customer-facing angle, with a shipment portal that offers its customers the ability to share both internal data as well as third-party data with their end-customers, says the company, such as multi-source container visibility, emissions reporting, and quote-to-book.
Michael Treskow, Partner at Eight Roads added: “The team has leveraged a combination of industry expertise and cutting-edge AI to build a product that delivers immediate value to its customers. There are many more concrete pain points Raft can solve for the industry.”