Lufthansa Cargo led a US$10 million Series A round of financing in Fleet, an online freight platform startup, with participation from investors, including Hunt Technology Ventures and UPS.
Fleet is an online marketplace that matches customers’ demand for freight services with available capacity provided by logistics companies, offering an alternative to the conventional freight-forwarding model.
The deal puts Lufthansa Cargo’s considerable airfreight muscle behind a technology-driven logistics startup, raising Fleet’s prospects in an increasingly crowded market.
“We expect substantial learnings with regard to our product and service portfolio,” said Lufthansa Cargo CEO Peter Gerber.
“Thus, we are sure that Lufthansa Cargo and Fleet will mutually benefit from sharing concepts and ideas.”
Fleet will expand its board of directors, with the new seat being held by Lufthansa Cargo’s CCO, Alexis von Hoensbroech.
While startups such as Fleet initially gained traction by connecting shippers with unused capacity, demand for unused space has made online freight brokering increasingly attractive as markets for air and overland freight tighten.
Fleet says that, over the course of 2017, the shipping spend via the Fleet platform has grown seven-fold.