With $50M Raised, He’s Leading Cargo Container Software Space

Zvi Schreiber

In Episode #733, Nathan interviews Zvi Schreiber, founder and CEO of Freightos – the internet marketplace for the trillion-dollar international freight industry. Zvi was previously the CEO for Lightech which was acquired by G.E., and was also the founder and CEO of Unicorn Solutions which was acquired by IBM. Additionally, Zvi was the founder of G.ho.st, a predecessor of DropBox, which ended in a fire sale. He’s spoken widely and were in many articles and patents. He has a PhD in Computer Science and he’s the author of Fizz: Nothing Is as It Seems, which tells the history of physics as a novel.

Famous Five:

  • Favorite Book? – Crossing the Chasm
  • What CEO do you follow? – Jeff Bezos
  • Favorite online tool? — Mixmax
  • How many hours of sleep do you get? — 7 hours
  • If you could let your 20-year old self, know one thing, what would it be? – “It’s okay for startups to take on a big conservative industry”

Time Stamped Show Notes:

  • 01:08 – Nathan introduces Zvi to the show
  • 02:23 – Freightos is targeting the world of international freight
  • 02:45 – 90% of the products sold in the West are imported – the entire lifestyle is dependent in international freight
  • 03:18 – The biggest cost components in the freight industry is the trucking, ocean liners, port handling, and airlines
  • 04:38 – “This big industry is very inefficient”
  • 04:52 – Asking for a quote from a big freight forwarding company can take about 3 days
  • 05:45 – Freightos is the Expedia for freight
  • 06:09 – Freightos make money by having a cut in the transaction
  • 06:24 – They basically do the marketing for the seller
  • 06:40 – Freight forwarders are companies that arrange freight like Expeditors and H. Robinson
  • 06:59 – Some more known forwarders are UPS and FedEx
  • 07:24 – The buyers in this marketplace are the import/export companies
  • 08:46 – Freightos help with importing/exporting and not door to door deliveries
  • 09:15 – Freightos only takes 2% from the freight forwarders’ transaction
  • 09:35 – They don’t take any percentages from the buyer’s end
  • 10:02 – Many freight forwarders are using Freightos’ software to automate their own pricing
  • 10:23 – Freightos is a SaaS business
  • 10:33 – They’ve recently raised $25M from an investment round led by G.E.
  • 11:21 – In 2016, 90% of their revenue came from SaaS because they’ve just launched the marketplace that year
  • 11:35 – Without the SaaS, freight forwarders are not able to do instant pricing
  • 11:54 – The SaaS platform is serving about 1,000 freight forwarders all around the world
  • 12:04 – Freightos is the market leader for the SaaS
  • 12:22 – There are only a few thousand freight forwarders that matter and Freightos has 1,000 of them as customers
  • 12:35 – January 2012 was the launch date of Freightos
  • 12:43 – Freightos’ team size is about 150 people across the world
  • 13:17 – Every shipment involves 2 countries
  • 13:26 – Their biggest office is in Jerusalem and Barcelona
  • 14:07 – Their customers pay from less than $1K/month to tens of thousands per month for the subscription
  • 14:43 – The reason why most marketplace startups fail is because of the chicken-and-egg problem
  • 15:06 – Freightos spent 4 years selling SaaS to companies
  • 15:40 – Freightos’ first year revenue was 0
  • 15:45 – The first revenue came in 2013
  • 16:25 – It was in 2015 when Freightos earned their first million
  • 16:56 – Each month there are about many hundreds to a thousand transactions in their marketplace
  • 17:33 – Freightos is starting to educate freight forwarders and importers/exporters that they don’t need to wait anymore for pricing
  • 18:16 – There are thousands of buyers already using their software
  • 20:03 – The Famous Five

3 Key Points:

  1. Our lifestyle is heavily dependent on imported goods.
  2. Find an industry’s pain point and start something from there.
  3. Don’t be afraid to create a startup in a big and conservative industry.

Resources Mentioned:

  • The Top Inbox – The site Nathan uses to schedule emails to be sent later, set reminders in inbox, track opens, and follow-up with email sequences
  • GetLatka – Database of all B2B SaaS companies who have been on my show including their revenue, CAC, churn, ARPU and more
  • Klipfolio – Track your business performance across all departments for FREE
  • Hotjar – Nathan uses Hotjar to track what you’re doing on this site. He gets a video of each user visit like where they clicked and scrolled to make the site a better experience
  • Acuity Scheduling – Nathan uses Acuity to schedule his podcast interviews and appointments
  • Host Gator– The site Nathan uses to buy his domain names and hosting for the cheapest price possible
  • Audible– Nathan uses Audible when he’s driving from Austin to San Antonio (1.5-hour drive) to listen to audio books
  • Show Notes provided by Mallard Creatives