Fremont, CA August 21, 2023: Channel19, a platform for refrigerated trucking companies in the U.S., announced that it has raised $2.7 million in pre-seed and seed funding, led by Augment Ventures with participation by Accion Venture Lab, TMV, Overton Venture Capital and Refashiond Ventures. Several Silicon Valley and freight tech industry angels also participated.
Channel19’s mission is to address the intricate operational inefficiencies that burden small refrigerated trucking businesses. The trucking industry in the U.S. is highly fragmented, with 95.7% of trucking companies having fewer than ten trucks. In addition, the average truck driver in the US is over 47 years old. As this population heads toward retirement, the shortage of drivers continues to grow. As a result, the number of foreign-born truck drivers has more than doubled since 2000, and in California, the second-largest trucking market, nearly half of all drivers are immigrants. Channel19 was co-founded by Tony Singh, who built the company to solve the challenges his family experienced working in the trucking industry in Northern India and then after immigrating to the U.S.
To cater to small truckers, especially those that might have less familiarity with digital tools, Channel19 developed an intuitive platform that optimizes load selection, scheduling, real-time tracking, document sharing, and invoicing to ensure the highest possible revenue yield for small trucking companies moving refrigerated freight. Channel19’s platform also offers efficient route planning that reduces unnecessary travel and limits empty return journeys, significantly reducing the environmental impact of refrigerated freight transportation.
“Channel19’s vision is to empower refrigerated freight operators to make informed decisions that optimize their financial outcomes,” explains Tony Singh. “Our platform alleviates the burden of searching for, bidding on, and booking freight by aggregating loads, eliminating manual steps, and layering on embedded financial services that enable customers to manage their entire business in one place. This enables smaller refrigerated trucking businesses to not just survive through economic downturns but thrive during the eventual economic boom cycle.”
As Augment Ventures Founder and Managing Partner Sonali Vijayavargiya comments: “With low average load factors and an aging workforce, it is clear to us that the freight industry is ripe for massive disruption. We are investing in Channel19 to create a simpler and more efficient operating environment for the independent trucking industry. Tony’s firsthand experience in witnessing the inefficiencies in trucking and clear passion make him the right leader to build a truly transformational platform.”
Amee Parbhoo, Managing Partner at Accion Venture Lab, said: “In addition to streamlining workflows for refrigerated trucking companies, Channel19 is providing customers with a simple and affordable way to accelerate cash flow. We’ve seen that without a solution like this, truckers instead turn to predatory, long-term contracts with companies that layer on hidden fees. We’re excited to partner with Channel19 to bring fair, tailored financial services to the logistics sector.”
Channel19 is seeing early traction with its initial customer base adopting its technology and a steady inflow of new customer sign ups. As the trucking industry continues its digital evolution, Channel19 is primed to contribute to the refrigerated freight sector, providing a comprehensive, easy-to-use tool set that drives the industry forward.
Contact: Tony Singh for further inquiries (email: email@example.com, phone: 530-400-0983)
Channel19 is a startup digitizing the refrigerated trucking industry with a unified platform designed to optimize operations, increase profitability, and drive sustainability. Through its intelligent data aggregation, strategic planning capabilities, and comprehensive insights, Channel19 is redefining the operations of the refrigerated freight trucking business. For further information, visit www.channel19.io.
About Augment Ventures
Augment Ventures is an early-stage investor that invests across North America in diverse mission-driven founders who are building digital and data automation companies to transform traditional industries, creating new business models, and shifting us all toward a more productive and sustainable world. Augment actively works with its portfolio companies to develop new markets, build alliances, and hire talent. For further information, visit www.augmentventures.com.
About Accion Venture Lab
Accion Venture Lab is a seed-stage investor that provides capital and extensive support to innovative fintech startups that improve the reach, quality, and affordability of financial services for the underserved and have the potential to scale. Venture Lab has invested in more than 60 early-stage startups that operate in 30 countries worldwide. Venture Lab is a part of Accion, a global nonprofit committed to creating a fair and inclusive economy, with a pioneering legacy in microfinance and fintech impact investing. Accion catalyzes financial service providers to deliver high-quality, affordable solutions at scale for the 1.8 billion people who are left out of – or poorly served by – the financial sector. For 60 years, Accion has helped tens of millions of people through our work with more than 200 partners in 63 countries. For further information, visit www.accion.org/venturelab.