Ryder acquires logistics tech startup

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Ryder System (CCJ Top 250, No. 14) has acquired Baton, a San Francisco-based start-up known for the development of a proprietary logistics technology focused on optimizing transportation networks.

Ryder’s corporate venture capital fund RyderVentures invested in the tech firm early last year. Under the terms of the deal, Baton cofounders Andrew Berberick and Nate Robert will join Ryder as co-chief product and technology officers for the supply chain and dedicated transportation businesses. 

Baton's technology platform seeks to eliminate detention and dwell time for truck drivers by having long haul trucks drop off and pick up loads within the company's network of drop zones and Baton handling pick up and delivery to and from warehouses.

“Baton’s technology is what initially caught our eye, but in working with Andrew and Nate over the past year and watching as they evolved their platform, I think we all realized that it was just the beginning of so much more," said Karen Jones, chief marketing officer and head of new product development for Ryder. "By joining forces, we can tackle a host of supply chain disruptions by building out a new suite of products leveraging their existing tech platform."

Also joining Ryder are several members of Baton’s core leadership team, including Erik Malin as a group director of operations. He brings experience from Loadsmart, AFN, and CarrierDirect. Ryan Houlihan will join Ryder as a director of engineering. He has worked for Apple, NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory, and Kinema Systems (acquired by Boston Dynamics). Jason Liu will also join Ryder as a director of engineering. He brings experience from BuildZoom and as co-founder of 56, a website design-and-build agency.

There have been 15 mergers and acquisitions among CCJ's Top 250 for-hire carriers since the beginning of June, and 24 Top 250 fleets have struck 23 deals this year.