Everybody knows that there are two things I absolutely love: collaboration, and visibility. And never have these two things been more important than this past year. We’ve faced unprecedented times, as the COVID-19 pandemic tore through the industry, disrupting everything from manufacturing to shipping; whilst simultaneously demanding supply chain step up, as the safe movement of things like food, vaccines and essential household supplies became paramount.
I’ve talked to so many businesses about the weaknesses the pandemic has exposed within our industry; the stress points its tested; the outdated methodologies and technologies it’s unveiled. But I’ve also talked a lot about the positives – the benefits that have come from shining a light on those hidden, or forgotten, weaknesses; the amazing agility and resilience we discovered (that we didn’t even know we had!); the new, more innovative mindsets that have emerged. And a renewed and enthusiastic commitment to collaboration and visibility are undeniably two of the most important outcomes.
One company who’s really doubled down on their commitment to these two vital areas is FourKites. Despite the struggles that much of the industry is still facing FourKites, a leading global supply chain software brand focused on bringing real-time visibility to supply chain, has incredibly just secured $100 million of Series D growth financing. This hugely important deal will help them to continue their mission of taking visibility end to end, connecting the physical and digital worlds of warehouses, stores and transportation with real-time data and machine learning to transform supply chains on an epic scale.
The investment comes courtesy of huge names THL, Volvo Group, Zebra Technologies, Qualcomm, August Capital, CEAS Investments, Hyde Park Angels, Hyde Park Venture Partners and Bain Capital – clearly demonstrating that FourKites isn’t the only big industry name committed to transforming global supply chain with end-to-end visibility, utilizing the power of collaboration.
Because these investors don’t just bring capital to the table; they aren’t just boastful, big business name drops. These partnerships are the definition of strategic alliance, where brand visions for customer satisfaction, technology, efficiency and everything in between truly align to create the most robust, innovative strategies to drive the industry forward.
Whilst THL shares a commitment to supply chain automation, Volvo Group Venture Capital focuses on trends that are shaping the future of transportation. Zebra Technologies brings leadership in enterprise asset intelligence and Qualcomm Ventures shares its scale and capabilities in wireless, 5G and IoT technologies.
This supply chain supergroup brings fresh ideas, expertise, innovation and capabilities to the pioneering FourKites platform that will not only help to propel FourKites into the future, but will change the trajectory of the industry forever and set the tone for supply chain for years to come.
FourKites has an amazing vision for the future, a vision that I share as well. A vision of interconnected, secure, intelligent networks where supply chain partners can find new ways to optimize operations, innovate and deliver greater customer service and value through real-time visibility.
And this new financing deal, combining capital with collaboration to deliver ultimate visibility, brings us all one step closer to that vision.