ZIM is investing in a start-up that brings together ocean freight and international consumer online shopping to enable consumers to buy large and bulky items directly from the manufacturer.
ZIM has announced a direct investment in start-up company Ladingo, as part of a US$1M funding round Ladingo has just completed. This level of investment seems rather light when compared to Ladingo’s ambitions to drive a revolution in B2C e-commerce, but ZIM is confident. "Ladingo founders indicate that as a seed investment they are confident that the funding will allow Ladingo to reach the next more significant financing round with a winning and scalable solution - Ladingo is "lean and mean" and has a unique synergy with ZIM," a ZIM spokesperson said to WorldCargo News. US$1M would likely be insufficient to get a start-up off the ground in the US, but the spokesperson said it is a "realistic seed amount for an Israel-based startup...Ladingo is pioneering the next ecommerce revolution and will grow and evolve to a global leader in this field".
ZIM sees Ladingo as a way to capture new cargo and tap into the air freight market. “Today, nearly all B2C e-commerce purchases, estimated at 2.5 trillion dollars annually, are shipped via air freight. The disadvantage of air freight is its weight and size limitations, which prevents items from being shipped at a reasonable cost. The price obstacle and regulatory requirements limit the variety of products that online shops can sell to international customers. In view of recent dramatic developments in retail logistics, both ZIM and Ladingo sought to provide a technological solution to the complex logistical world of ocean freight. They did so, believing that connecting such a solution to the world of e-commerce would at last enable retailers to sell all their products online, including their large and bulky items, with relatively low shipping costs,” ZIM stated.
Ladingo was founded in January of 2018 by Hagar Valiano Rips, Ruth Reiner and Guy Levi. It claims to be “the world’s first company to offer a comprehensive solution to online shops selling large and bulky items such as furniture, bicycles, fitness equipment, garden equipment, electronics and more – directly from overseas retailers or manufacturers to the shoppers’ door”.
When it comes to logistics, Ladingo has developed a “container-sharing solution for end shoppers” that it claims can dramatically reduce shipping costs. Ladingo does not manage the shipping itself, but enables the process. “Ladingo’s innovative platform connects online retailers, ocean forwarders and customers to enable the shipping of purchases of all shapes and sizes in shared containers. The platform knows how to optimally load the containers with existing purchases AND deal with regulations, customs and taxation issues, optimizing cost-effective delivery to travel along the best route and satisfy all parties’ individual needs. In this way, Ladingo is enabling the world of B2C e-commerce to have large and heavy items delivered to their front door, seamlessly and efficiently, so brands can focus on other, more pressing retail e-commerce tasks,” Ladingo claims.
Ladingo is targeting merchandise sellers, who can sign up for the platform and receive real time quotes for international shipping that can be integrated into their online sales websites. The promise to sellers is that they will receive “end-to-end customs brokerage for shipments of all sizes - all regulation, taxation and documentation is automated”, as well as full item tracking.
Forwarders signing up for Ladingo have to receive and handle the actual goods, but are promised that Ladingo’s platform “automates the entire international shipping process, from e-commerce purchase to delivery to the shopper’s doorstep, via ocean freight. Services include customs docs, container allocation and optimization, labeling and more.”
Assaf Tiran, VP of Global Customer Service at ZIM, also responsible for the company’s digital solutions field commented: “We believe that innovation and creative ideas will define the future of the logistics industry, especially that of maritime shipping. Our support and investment in Ladingo is part of the greater ZIM vision, one of openness and the promotion of technological innovation in all aspects of our operations. We see tremendous potential in Ladingos’ platform, providing a real breakthrough simplifying the complex supply chain process all the way to the end-users’ homes. We believe that developments like Ladingo will lead to a significant change in global trade. ZIM strives to be a leader in the promotion of these processes.”
Hagar Valiano Rips, CEO of Ladingo added: “We are proud and pleased that ZIM, a leader standing at the forefront of global logistics, has invested in us. Ladingo will lead significant change in the world of e-commerce fulfillment.” Rips continued, “When it comes to the revolution we are leading, item location, size and weight have no significance, and there is no longer a need for inventory. Looking a couple of years ahead, we will all buy directly from sellers or manufacturers abroad – without any intermediaries. This is the manifestation of a true global e-commerce revolution. ZIM is not only investing in Ladingo’s technology, they are engaging in a fully synergistic investment, one that will lead to a revolution within the B2C world.”