Freight Data And Analytics Company FreightWaves Raises $37 Million

By Amit Chowdhry ● July 28, 2020
  • FreightWaves — the leading provider of freight data and analytics — announced that it has raised $37 million in two rounds of minority investment since April

FreightWaves — the leading provider of freight data and analytics — announced that it has raised $37 million in two rounds of minority investment since April. This round of funding was led by Kayne Partners Fund (the growth private equity group of Kayne Anderson Capital Advisors, L.P.). Kayne Partners Fund has committed $30 million to accelerate FreightWaves’ growth. This round of funding puts the total capital raised by FreightWaves at $75 million.

Kayne Partners Fund’s investment is a minority non-controlling investment that will support strategic and sustainable growth in the company. And Kayne Partners Fund Managing Partner and Co-Head of Growth Equity Nishita Cummings will join the FreightWaves board in connection with this funding round.

Kayne Partners Fund will join venture investors including 8VC, Fontinalis Partners, Revolution Ventures, Hearst Ventures, Prologis Ventures, Story Ventures, and Engage Ventures in supporting the growth of FreightWaves — which has been focused on building a fast-growing SaaS and market data business that services the $9.6 trillion global logistics industry.

Existing management — led by founder and CEO Craig Fuller, President George Abernathy, and CFO Spencer Piland — will continue to lead the company through the next stage of growth.

In the first half of 2020, FreightWaves had grown top-line revenues by over 50% over the first half of 2019. And the 2019 number included revenues from two FreightWaves LIVE events that did not take place in the first half of 2020. Even without the community events segment, FreightWaves more than tripled revenues year-over-year.

FreightWaves TV — the world’s first daily TV streaming news network dedicated to logistics and supply chain — is now serving an audience of over 25,000 daily viewers. And FreightWaves TV has 12 weekly shows that cover topics ranging from freight market updates (FreightWaves NOW), discussion about trucking spot rates (On the Spot), sales and marketing techniques (Put that Coffee Down), general content about news and trends that impact trucking (What the Truck?!?), and a fireside chat between FreightWaves’ founder and other executives in the logistics industry (Fuller Speed Ahead). Now FreightWaves has a streaming content network that includes TV, Podcasts, and a radio broadcast partnership with Sirius XM Radio.

The Kayne Partners Fund’s investment is arriving after an unreported insider $7 million investment round that took place in April. FreightWaves plans to use this additional funding for growth initiatives such as product development and potential strategic acquisitions.

KEY QUOTES:

“We are excited to welcome Kayne Partners Fund to the FreightWaves journey. We met with dozens of investors over the past year and felt that Kayne Partners Fund would be the best partner for FreightWaves’ next stage of growth. It brings diversity to our board and provides us with capital to pursue strategic growth initiatives.”

“Community and events like FreightWaves LIVE were more than 50% of our revenue in the first half of 2019,” Fuller explained. “With COVID-19 forcing us to cancel FreightWaves LIVE in May, we weren’t able to host our bi-annual event and experienced a significant impact to top-line revenues. The good news for us is that we had been building an over-the-top streaming TV network that was able to carry the FreightWaves LIVE content and experience into a virtual format. At our planned Atlanta event, we had expected to host more than 2,000 industry guests, but with the virtual offering of FreightWaves @HOME, we served more than 90,000 streaming participants over the three-day experience.”

— FreightWaves CEO Craig Fuller

“We are thrilled to partner with Craig, George, Spencer and the rest of the FreightWaves team to further accelerate the company’s growth. FreightWaves’ SONAR SaaS solution has already begun to redefine how decisions are made in the logistics space, and we look forward to supporting the team in expanding a product suite that customers throughout the freight landscape increasingly rely on to successfully manage daily operations.”

— Kayne Partners Fund Managing Partner and Co-Head of Growth Equity Nishita Cummings