SmartHop — A platform for truckers, by truckers
Trucking is one of America’s most critical and vital industries. Not only is it one of the US’s largest labor categories (employing greater than 3 million individuals), but COVID has served as a harsh reminder of the vulnerability of our nation’s supply chain and our reliance on these workers. I was first acquainted with the trucking industry in 2015 when I met Doug Waggoner and the team at Echo Global Logistics, a publicly-traded freight logistics company co-founded by my bosses at Lightbank. Over the next several years, I spent hundreds of hours getting to know brokers, dispatchers and the drivers they work with. These drivers represent some of the hardest working, yet most underestimated workers I’ve ever met.
The Next Mile in the Journey — Congratulations to SmartHop on their Series A led by USV
Today SmartHop announced the close of a Series A round led by Rebecca Kaden of Union Square Ventures. This represents a tremendous (and well deserved) milestone for a company that is truly transforming the trucking value chain. We first announced our investment in SmartHop in July and shared the story of how Equal and SmartHop came together. Since then, the company has experienced incredible growth, extended its array of products (offering fuel cards, factoring and leasing to our drivers), established countless partnerships with brokers, and become one of the largest sources of loads in the country. To put this in perspective, SmartHop launched its product last February and has surged to become an emerging leader in the trucking industry in just under a year.
Congrats to SmartHop! $30m more to democratize the road for truckers
2 years ago when we led SmartHop’s seed round, we shared a vision with Guillermo to democratize the road for truckers. These truckers faced tough working conditions and low pay, but perhaps even more concerning was how the long-tail of drivers were exploited by the industry. This long-tail wasn’t some fringe case, it was the majority of the truck drivers in America (which is about 3.4m drivers in 2020).