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ZUUM Technologies eyes Series A early next year

Article originally posted on Mergermarket by Chris Metinko.

ZUUM Transportation anticipates starting a Series A round early next year as the company looks to disrupt the slow-to-change logistics industry, said co-founder and COO Matt Tabatabai. The Irvine, California-based logistics platform developer has not finalized how much it may raise in a Series A, but Tabatabai said USD 10m to USD 15m is a “fair” estimate.

Any new proceeds would be used to continue the “hypergrowth” the company is seeing, said Tabatabai. Despite the economic ups-and-downs caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, this should be the company’s best year, said Tabatabai, adding it should see between 2x to 3x growth. 

ZUUM’s platform for shippers, brokers and carriers helps streamline logistics and supply chains, said Tabatabai. The company is trying to create the industry’s first complete “logistics super platform” combining a digital freight marketplace with a shipper transportation management system (TMS), broker software, carrier TMS and driver app.

ZUUM Raises $8.58m in Seed Funding

ZUUM recently announced the close of a second seed round of USD 8.58m. Founded in 2016, the company has raised USD 12.58m to date. Tabatabai said “timing” was the main issue in raising a second round of seed instead of undertaking a Series A raise. He agreed the pandemic may have played some role in raising the second seed round in lieu of a Series A.

While the logistics market is more than USD 1.2tn in the US and USD 8tn globally, it is an industry that has been slow to integrate technology, said Tabatabai. However, as COVID-19 has forced digital transformation upon many industries, it also is doing so in the logistics world as shippers and carriers are looking to decrease operating expenses and increase production, he added.

Digital Transformation in Logistics

ZUUM also cites an IPO as an eventual goal – although likely more than three years away – but it already has seen some acquisition interest from buyers, said Tabatabai. The company is not interested in selling, so talks never progressed, said Tabatabai, declining to elaborate on the past interest. However, Tabatabai said he does think there is be more dealmaking activity than in the past as large logistics companies and those with older technology solutions look to finally update and digitally transform, he said. 

ZUUM began testing its platform and generating revenue in 2017. The company counts more than 235 shippers as customers and has started to sell to brokers, said Tabatabai. The company’s investors include Estes Express Lines, BNSF Logistics, Plug and Play Ventures, Logifruit of Spain, Estes Forwarding, SAIC Ventures and Holman Growth Ventures.