Emerge: The Direct Link between Shippers and Carriers

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Michael Leto, CEO, EmergeMichael Leto, CEO
Trucking is responsible for most of the overland freight movement in the U.S., with the freight trucking industry’s worth soaring to almost $800 billion in 2019. Although the numbers speak volumes, the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic has put the freight industry in a frenzy due to increased volatility in the already fragmented truckload market, resulting in supply shortages and skyrocketing costs. With the growing need to find and allocate truck freight more effectively, shippers and brokers have been readily looking for alternative methods to tap into more capacity. To this end, Arizona-based Emerge has created a Digital Freight Marketplace that serves as a truckload procurement platform for connecting shippers to direct carrier rates. “We built Emerge with the goal to empower shippers with a level of sophistication that they never had from a spot and contract standpoint,” asserts Michael Leto, the CEO at Emerge.

Michael is no stranger to the freight industry; while growing up, he and his brother, Andrew Leto, spent their summers at the warehouse to help their father run his air freight business. Fast forward a few years, Andrew went on to serve in the U.S. Navy, and Michael was entrusted with the responsibility of the family business. Working with his father, Michael learned all about the ins and outs of logistics and freight operations while helping his father with warehousing and inventory management. During the same time, Andrew joined the family business and suggested diversifying the freight forwarding business to ensure sustainability. The Letos then established GlobalTranz—a third-party logistics company specializing in Less-Than-Truckload (LTL) management—and created a platform called carrierrate.com. After selling the company in 2016, the Leto brothers went on to establish Emerge in 2017 with the mission of addressing the inefficiencies of the out-dated freight procurement process. They recognized that the truckload industry was beset with challenges around the manual processes adopted by brokers and shippers, who heavily relied on emails and Excel spreadsheets to administer their Requests for Proposal (RFP).


We built Emerge with the goal to empower shippers with a level of sophistication that they never had from a spot and contract standpoint

Besides, RFPs cause shippers to overpay for capacity and restrict pricing options by only inviting a fraction of the available carriers. It invariably results in limited options for shippers as they can only choose the best rate from a limited pool of carriers. As an answer to this problem, Emerge provides its Digital Freight Marketplace—a suite of tools including Dynamic RFP, Spot Management, and a Light TMS, to present the best rate from a massive network of vetted carriers alongside rates from a shipper’s incumbent network. To put this into perspective, Michael explains that, most shippers usually source their capacity through 40 or 50 logistics partners—of which the vast majority are trucking companies and a small subset of brokers. The market, on the other hand, is replete with thousands of brokers and freight carriers. Emerge acts as the direct route connecting shippers to this wide pool of carriers, allowing them to find reliable truck capacity at optimized shipping rates. “We are offering a free platform to shippers, enabling them to directly communicate with carriers, sign contracts, and do so with high visibility. It provides shippers with a better way to manage their freight while offering additional capacity at reduced costs by identifying the right partners on the right lanes,” says Michael. Emerge brings in a carrier marketplace of about 30,000 carriers who can directly connect with current and new shippers on a single platform and bid on contracted lanes. Embracing an “all-inclusive” approach, the platform connects all parties interested in moving freight, from shippers, brokers (traditional and digital) to carriers while simultaneously improving service, right from the quote to delivery.

Currently, the company has a billion dollars’ worth of freight moving through its platform annually. Pushing full steam ahead, Emerge is focused on adding more transactions to create a robust network effect that will help both shippers and carriers find the right partners to optimize their transportation spend. The more partners Emerge adds the more optimized the network becomes diving value from both a cost and service perspective. “We focus on providing the most efficient truck to our shippers when they’re procuring a full truckload. Our aim is to enhance our market reach and onboard more shippers onto our platform in order to help them effectively procure their freight,” states Michael.

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Top 10 Logistics Tech Startups - 2020
Emerge

Company
Emerge

Headquarters
Scottsdale, AZ

Management
Michael Leto, CEO

Description
Emerge has created a Digital Freight Marketplace that serves as a procurement platform for domestic trucking for connecting shippers and carriers. Emerge offers its freight logistics platform that allows shippers to find reliable truck capacity at optimized shipping rates. It reduces the shipper operating costs by facilitating contract optimization while simultaneously improving service, right from the quote to delivery. The free platform allows the carrier and the shipper to communicate with each other, sign contracts, and to do it with high visibility. Emerge provides its Digital Freight Marketplace—a suite of tools including Dynamic RFP, Spot Management, and a Light TMS, to present the best rate from a massive network of vetted carriers alongside rates from a shipper’s incumbent network