Security type: Crowd SAFE
Valuation (cap): $10 million
Minimum investment: $100
Where to invest: Republic
Deadline: Invest ASAP! Raise is almost filled up
What I do is very simple. I try to find very small companies solving very big problems. Simple for me. Quite hard for the small company.
Fleeting, though, is up to the task. It’s an 11-employee startup with a plan and platform to fix the growing truck driver shortage that’s making life miserable for trucking companies.
Right now, drivers are too expensive to hire but also too expensive to contract out. It costs an unfathomable $5,000 to $10,000 to contract a single driver to do a haul. And you have to give the staffing agency 10 to 15 days’ notice.
A Broken System
Most trucking companies are small, operating a fleet with only a handful of trucks. Many full-time drivers are underpaid and often call in to say they’re unavailable. Companies then pay $6,000 to $15,000 to recruit certified drivers. And they have to deal with churn rates as high as 89%. If they’re lucky, they squeak out a modest profit.
The only reason why this broken-down system continues is there’s no alternative.
That doesn’t cut it with the founder and CEO of Fleeting, Pierre Laguerre. He’s been in the trucking business for 10 years. He started as a driver. Then he went on to own and operate his own trucking and staffing companies. He learned firsthand how flawed the system is. And how ripe it is for disruption.
The U.S. trucking industry is huge. It generates more than $700 billion in transactions every year. Yet almost 1,000 trucking companies (out of 385,000) went under last year. And another 600 are expected to fail in 2020.
It shouldn’t have to be this way.
Fleeting has created an online platform that fixes this problem for both truck companies and truck drivers. Truckers no longer have to live in the black and white world of either you work full-time for a trucking company or you don’t work at all (or for peanuts). And truck companies can access fully vetted drivers on short notice for a reasonable fee.
It all comes down to pricing. Pierre has devised a pricing structure where the numbers work for everybody. Drivers get higher pay, much needed flexibility and the gift of a higher quality of life. Trucking companies no longer need as many trucks or full-time truck drivers to take on a given number of jobs.
How do the numbers adequately and fairly reward the owners and operators, the drivers and Fleeting? As investors, it’s the most important thing you need to know.
Everybody Gets a Fair Piece of the Pie
Be forewarned, I’m going to do a little rounding off to make the numbers easier to understand.
Fleeting is currently onboarding four large customers. They contract out about 20 drivers a day. Fleeing charges these companies $35 an hour and pays the drivers $25 an hour. It keeps $10 an hour for itself.
In a typical 10-hour day, Fleeting makes $100 per driver. For 20 drivers, it makes $2,000 a day. Per month that comes to $60,000. Fleeting rounds it down to $50,000 just to be conservative. Beginning in July – Oh look, that’s TODAY – Fleeting will be making $200,000 a month from the four companies it is onboarding right now.
This pricing structure, however, doesn’t work for smaller trucking companies because they offer lower hourly wages. So instead of taking a cut of the hourly wage, Fleeting simply charges these smaller companies a flat booking fee that ranges from $50 to $100 a day.
In return, these companies pay their drivers anywhere from $20 an hour to $27 an hour. A company hiring five drivers a day would pay Fleeting $250 to $500 a day in booking fees (or $7,500 to $15,000 a month).
Ten of these customers (each needing five drivers per day) would generate fees of $75,000 to $150,000 a month. And 50 of these companies would pay fees of $375,000 to $750,000.
Fleeting has onboarded 20 small trucking companies already. Pierre says they’ll have at least 50 onboarded by the end of this year. And there’s still the $200,000 from the four big companies it’s bringing in. So assuming (very conservatively) it doesn’t add any more large companies this year, Fleeting will be making around $575,000 to $975,000 per month by the end of this year.
Those are the numbers. They’re pretty solid. The one thing that can knock them off course is a further delay in the U.S. economy’s re-opening.
But that would only put Fleeting a few months behind schedule (in all likelihood). Such a small delay doesn’t bother me in the least. As early investors, we’re used to waiting several years for startups to mature into powerful and profitable companies. A few months delay at the outset is a minor concern.
As for competition, there is a bigger company that’s been around for a while (and has already made overtures to buy Fleeting out!). But it’s too slow and too expensive. It adheres to the old way of doing things. It poses no threat to Fleeting’s existence. Indeed, it’s the reason why Fleeting exists.
Fleeting will undoubtedly reach its maximum raise target of $1 million. That risk is off the table. It will get the money it needs to strengthen sales and marketing, accelerate the vetting of drivers and more rapidly onboard trucking companies. The company has just expanded its operations from New York City, New Jersey, Baltimore and Philly to include Atlanta. Its next target is Texas, followed by Florida and California.
No Small Feat
Fixing a problem this big is no small feat. Fleeting has done an impressive job of carrying out its plan so far. Pierre’s well-honed entrepreneurial instincts and years of boots-on-the-ground experience have served him well. I fully expect to see the company’s growth accelerate and revenue to make a big jump in the following months.
How to Invest
Fleeting is raising up to $1.07 million on Republic. If you don’t already have a Republic account, you can sign up for one here.
Once you verify your account and are logged in to Republic, visit the Fleeting’s deal page.
Then click the blue “Invest in Fleeting” button. Enter the amount you want to invest, starting as low as $100, and proceed through the required steps. Be sure your investment is confirmed, then you’re good to go.
This opportunity, like all early-stage investments, is risky. Early-stage investments often fail. Fleeting might need to raise another round of funding in a year or two, if not sooner.
If it executes well, this shouldn’t be a problem. But that’s a risk worth considering when investing in early-stage companies. The investment you’re making is NOT liquid.
Expect to hold your position for five to 10 years. An earlier exit is always possible but should not be expected.
All that said, I believe Fleeting offers an attractive risk-reward ratio.