In a successful move to bolster its operations, CloudFret, a transport and logistics startup, recently concluded a new funding round, securing €2 million ($2.1 million) from investors AfriMobility and Azur Innovation Fund. The startup, operational in Morocco since 2021 and extending its presence to Marseille, is poised for rapid development, with plans to double its workforce by the close of 2024. The focus of this funding round centres on the introduction of an innovative solution geared towards optimising empty truck returns, specifically targeting the intra-European market.
Established in 2021 by Driss Jabar, CloudFret initially concentrated on mitigating empty truck returns between the Mediterranean shores through an AI algorithm-driven platform connecting shippers and carriers. This mobile Software as a Service (SaaS) solution is accessible across all European carriers, freight forwarders, and shippers’ download platforms.
With the introduction of this new solution, CloudFret seeks to expand its clientele among shippers and partner carriers. Presently employing approximately a dozen individuals, the company has ambitious plans to double its workforce by the conclusion of 2024.
CloudFret’s pioneering approach incorporates artificial intelligence to detect empty cargo vehicles, directing them to available goods for transportation. This strategy minimizes empty truck returns, particularly between Europe and Africa, adopting a concept akin to carpooling, as exemplified by platforms like BlaBlaCar.
Driss Jabar, founder and CEO of CloudFret, elucidated that the platform originated from the observation of trucks covering extensive distances while empty. Beyond benefiting loaders and transporters, the platform empowers partners to expand operations and reduce delivery times, offering real-time updates on the cargo’s journey.
CloudFret presently serves 130 shipper clients, engaging with 900 transport companies operating 7,000 vehicles across six countries—France, Spain, Morocco, Senegal, Portugal, and Italy.
In addition to optimising empty truck returns, the startup has broadened its services, unveiling a business-to-business (B2B) SaaS marketplace. This marketplace not only provides optimal transport offers but also incorporates additional services such as FastPay payment after delivery, fuel cards with discounts and deferred payments, and cargo insurance at competitive market prices.
Driss Jabar shared insight into the company’s future, stating that “other large-scale investments are in the closing phase,” indicating a promising trajectory for CloudFret as it continues to reshape the transport and logistics industry.