Bill Gates and Jeff Bezos Invest in Uber Competitor
A Seattle-based trucking logistics startup has raised $62 million.
Bill Gates and Jeff Bezos finally have something to unite against: Uber. Both men, whose fortunes are within $3 billion of each other, are investors in a trucking logistics startup that competes with Uber.
Convoy Inc. makes software that matches nearby and available truckers to a shipping job, according to Bloomberg. The two-year-old company said Tuesday that it raised a new round of funding from Bill Gates’s Cascade Investment and other backers. Bezos invested earlier.
Convoy’s latest financing totals $62 million. The company has become a hot startup investment among billionaires, such as Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff and Kohlberg Kravis Roberts co-CEO Henry Kravis.
The company, whose original pitch was “Uber for trucking,” has raised $80 million in total since 2015, but now faces a new competitor: Uber itself, which rolled out its own version of on-demand trucking called Uber Freight. The app connects truck drivers to long-haul assignments.
Uber is facing a lawsuit that claims a former executive, who was working on autonomous trucking technology, conspired with the company Trucker Path to steal trade secrets from Alphabet Inc.’s Waymo. The company denies any wrongdoing, reports Bloomberg.
However, Convoy CEO Dan Lewis hopes to take advantage of this distraction. He said Convoy is fulfilling thousands of shipments and generating millions in sales every week, but declined to provide figures.
The US trucking market is worth about $800 million, but is very inefficient. Lewis said trucks are driving without cargo about 30 percent of the time, mostly when returning from a drop-off. He says Convoy will cut costs and pollution.
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