South African startup Matchbox has launched its app, which it says is a free and innovative way revolutionising the freight industry by connecting shippers and transporters directly in real time.
The Durban-based startup, which is named after its ability to match “boxes” or containers with transporters, was founded in 2016, though its app has only just gone live.
The Matchbox app aims to assist owner-operators, local, and regional fleets to increase their loads and expand business. Transporters can fill empty space by signing up for alerts to nearby jobs being auctioned to the best bidder, while in turn offering shippers a lower rate than current industry standards.
“We’re industry insiders and could clearly see the gap in the market. We started Matchbox to simplify the current process to find, book, track and pay for road transport in Africa,” said founder Anton Potgieter. “There is similar tech successfully operating in the US and Asia that can clearly work here in South Africa that will bring transparency and efficiency to road transport and reduce the cost of logistics in Africa.”
The app features a Transport Management System (TMS) that helps transporters manage their fleet and assign drivers to respond to jobs. It allows shippers to choose their transporters from a verified database that lists their ratings from customers as well as their ongoing performance.
Live tracking is available on each load, while fast pay is enabled via electronic pods and options for payment on pod. Matchbox vets and verifies all transporters on the platform with goods in transit insurance in place.
“Matchbox is set to be a success in South Africa, and our immediate future plan is to target deployment in East Africa next year,” said Potgieter.