KeepTruckin, a San Francisco startup which develops hardware and software to help truck firms manage vehicles and cargo, became the Bay Area's latest tech unicorn after it raised $149m in a Series D funding round and revealed the business valued $1.25bn.
The latest funding round was led by Greenoaks Capital, with existing investors GV, IVP, Index Ventures and Scale Venture Partners also participating. The firm plans to use the latest capital it has raised to double its employee headcount from 1,000 to 2,000 over the next 12–18 months.
KeepTruckin was founded in 2013 with the mission to help digitize the US's outdated trucking industry with its electronic logging system which allows trucking firms to manage fleets and drivers to legally log their hours. Today, its software is deployed in hundreds of thousands of vehicles.
"Our technology really improves the life of the driver," KeepTruckin co-founder and CEO Shoaib Makani told TechCrunch. "These are real people doing work that keeps our economy moving.
"Trucking is really the foundation of the American economy," he added. "More than 70% of all freight is moved over the road in a truck. This is how we eat, consume and produce; without it, our economy wouldn't thrive."
The huge investment in KeepTruckin has revealed the true profitability of the trucking industry over the coming years.
"There's never been more interest in the future of transportation, and trucking in particular, among tech investors," Makani remarked in an interview with Forbes. "It's long overdue, frankly."
Greenoaks managing partner Neil Mehta added: "Trucking is forecasted to be a $1 trillion industry by 2024 and is the backbone of the global economy, yet has been underserved by technology but change is coming and KeepTruckin is at the leading edge."
"KeepTruckin is building the technology that trucking companies need to compete in the modern economy. The network that KeepTruckin has built will enable it to change the way freight is moved on our roads."