Lori Systems, the e-logistics company that digitizes haulage and provides shippers with solutions to efficiently manage their cargo and transporters, has announced an investment from Google.
This is the third investment from Google’s $50 million Africa Investment Fund, which was announced by CEO Sundar Pichai in October 2021. It follows the establishment of Google’s first product development center on the African continent, in Nairobi, Kenya, where Lori Systems was founded.
Lori Systems, named Africa’s seventh fastest-growing company earlier this year by the Financial Times, has assisted thousands of shippers and carriers in moving over $10 billion in cargo across the continent since its founding in 2017. Lori Systems, an African pioneer in e-logistics, reduces the cost of goods by removing pain points along the cargo journey: seamlessly connecting shippers to transportation, providing shippers with solutions to efficiently manage their cargo and transporters, and digitizing their entire transport operations, from sourcing transportation to documentation and payments.
“At Google, we understand the transformative power digitization can bring to the African continent. The region has so much potential, but innovation can unlock this. Lori Systems is a great example of how technology can be scalable across Africa and how, in turn, this can drive meaningful economic development,” comments Nitin Gajria, Google’s Managing Director for Sub-Saharan Africa.
“We’re excited to have Google as a partner as we continue to build the operating system for emerging market logistics. Our vision of the future of logistics in Africa is one that is digital, scalable, and more efficient,” said Lori Systems CEO Uche Ogboi. “We have been successful, achieving up to 20% price reduction for cargo owners and nearly 2x increase in truck utilization for transporters on our platform. We are excited about this funding as it will allow us to continue driving superior efficiencies across logistics on the continent.”
According to Knight Frank’s Logistics Africa report, logistics accounts for 75% of a product’s price in Africa (compared to 6% in the United States). Logistics operators on the continent face a slew of challenges, ranging from fragmented supply and demand markets to inconsistent pricing, paper documentation, and limited or no access to financing.
“In recent years, the global logistics industry has seen much innovation,” says Jean-Claude Homawoo, Lori Systems Co-founder & CPO. “However, global supply chains are in desperate need of modernization, with technologies still in their early stages. On the continent, the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) is expected to increase intra-African trade by 81%, creating a $21.9 billion opportunity in untapped trade potential for the 54 ratifying countries”.