Every month we select one Logistics Startup which represents a positive example of innovation in logistics, and has the potential to alter the way the industry operates. This month we are proud to announce that FreightHub is recognized as the October Logistics Startup of the Month for its leading role in digitalizing the European freight forwarding, and for pursuing the finest customer service in the industry. In order to understand their success, we asked them a couple of questions about their business. Congratulations, FreightHub!
1. To begin with, can you please briefly explain what FreightHub does?
FreightHub is Europe’s first fully digital freight forwarder. Our innovative internet platform provides international logistics services in a contemporary, transparent, and efficient way. Through an online-based platform our users can compare quotes and book sea, air and rail freight shipments in real-time. As a full-service freight forwarder FreightHub is covering the complete range of trade lanes: Full Container Load (FCL) and Less Container Load (LCL) as well as pre- and on-carriage transportation via different modes. A holistic Track&Trace system offers end-to-end visibility and together with a document management system is the perfect way to control your supply chain. We enable companies of any size to compare many shipping offers and book them with just a click. Currently, almost 500 customers are served on the Far-East westbound trade lane and proactively serviced by our team of 60 logistics, tech- and customer service specialists, based in Hamburg and Berlin.
2. What were the main drivers behind the creation of FreightHub? What were the reasons to start with the idea of Digital Freight Forwarding?
All our co-founders gained experience with the startup scene on different levels. Founders Ferry and Fabian successfully started and sold DailyDeal to Google, Michael was Co-Founder of Konux and Erik was involved with multiple tech businesses. In October 2015 the ideation phase started and the team started looking for a relevant industry which hadn’t been influenced by digitalization. They decided freight forwarding had the biggest potential!
3. As a company with a lot of successful customers, how do you keep your clients’ satisfaction at such a high level? Are there any tips you are willing to share with our readers?
At FreightHub we believe that you should always put your customer first. Despite being a digital freight forwarder we have a team of currently 60 people based in our offices in Berlin and Hamburg. Each customer has a personal contact who is responsible for all shipments running smoothly and ensures that rare exceptions are handled proactively! However, we not only run our day to day business with our customers in mind, but also try to think about a strategic decision from their point of view All new features and services we release are initially based on something that customers asked for.
4. How is the digitization changing the freight forwarding industry?
The industry’s main problem is the low degree of digitalization which often results in frustration for the customers. Many freight forwarders still manage their business via phone, emails and faxes. Their systems don’t provide Track&Trace, do not enable the automation of processes and are inefficient in general. FreightHub increases the efficiency significantly, channeling 90 % of the communication automatically through the platform, saving time for both parties and providing a digital 24/7 service.
A few freight forwarders have already noticed the market gap and the potential of digitalization for the logistics scene but no other business except for ours is able to automatically get real-time quotes and offer a Track&Trace service for our customers’ shipments from door to door at the same time. We also provide transparency by compiling all important shipping and customer documents at one place on our platform. Thus we make the shipping experience for our customers as convenient as possible.
5. The logistics industry still has a lot of potential for innovation. According to FreightHub, what does the future hold for logistics?
Driverless vehicles are making headlines at the moment. But it’s not just about cars and busses – autonomous trucks and even vessels are developing fast. The same applies for onboard AI (artificial intelligence) systems that, armed with a full array of data sensors and input from other sources, could navigate the safest and most efficient route. There are exciting times ahead and it will be interesting to see which new technologies will set new standards for the industry!
Below you can watch the video which explains how FreighHub platform works: