Lanehub develops backhaul matching tool for shippers, private fleets

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Updated Nov 12, 2019

Map utilizing trackingTwo years ago, tech startup Lanehub began matching recurring freight lanes of shippers in North America with available capacity from other shippers that operate dedicated and private fleets.

The company is now working with 100 shippers and 200 fleets to match freight in 70,000 lanes. In terms of volume, the cloud-based system has analyzed 12 million shipments that represent $15 billion in freight spend to find matches.

More than 80 percent of the 70,000 shipping lanes in the subscription-based service can be “matched,” the company says, for members to better utilize their private fleet capacity and lower transportation costs.

On Wednesday, Sept. 5, the Green Bay, Wis.-based technology company announced a new capability that allows shippers to market available private fleet capacity to other shippers and utilize available capacity from third-party private and dedicated contract carriers.

“From office space to automobiles, sharing and collaborating is becoming the norm in today’s businesses,” said Mark Hackl, chief executive officer and founder of Lanehub.

The new capability, Backhaul Assist, is an optional upgrade that provides additional technology and services to accelerate the discovery and implementation of collaboration opportunities, says Chandler Hall, Lanehub’s executive vice president and chief operating officer.

“Using the collaborative nature of Lanehub and Backhaul Assist will increase utilization and reduce costs,” says Hackl, “at a time when there is a shortage of truck capacity, and many private and dedicated fleets have trucks that still run empty or with inconsistent freight.”

Pricing for Backhaul Assist is on a per-shipment transaction basis. Shippers that use the new capability can work directly with other shippers and carriers or work through a single point of contact, a “3rd party manager” at Lanehub.

The fees for using Backhaul Assist are accounted for in the automatically calculated linehaul price for the freight and considered in the assessment of whether or not the match can meet both shippers’ financial objectives, Hall explains.

Backhaul Assist uses customizable parameters and its map view identifies matches and collaboration opportunities with private or dedicated fleets of members that achieve the target margins of all parties.

“We created Backhaul Assist because we found that while many for-hire carriers are paying attention to the spot market, shippers are expanding their private and dedicated fleets to address their capacity issues and looking for partners with reliable, recurring lanes to help get their trucks home,” explained Hackl.

Shippers can leverage the 3rd party manager option with Backhaul Assist to conduct the operational functions associated with moving the freight, such as helping shippers and dedicated fleets with the accounting for revenue sharing agreements from backhauls.

Members can also use their own existing tools and processes outside of Lanehub to execute the transactions.

“Lanehub itself doesn’t want to create duplicate workflows that become hard to manage,” Hall says.