Exclusive Interview with Rick Burnett, Founder/CEO LaneAxis
LaneAxis is a Disruptive Freight Management System
Rick has brought forth a simple, scalable Virtual Freight Management system that puts information and cost-control under the command of the shippers.
Rick and his Team have developed a simple desktop and mobile app that delivers efficiencies spanning the supply chain A to Zed, meaning from shippers to carriers to drivers to receivers.
LaneAxis’ technology creates a virtual freight management network that is fully transparent, allowing shippers and carriers to more effectively and efficiently transact all the intricate business details that must be addressed in the moving of freight around the nation and eventually the world.
Last week Rick and I sat down and reviewed his progress in this important logistics management innovation.
Q-1: Rick, lay out the competitive advantage further and explain how LaneAxis provides a more complete picture of the shipments than any other competitor.
A-1: The system provides shippers real-time data reports, in-transit GPS tracking, and digital Proof of Delivery on every load from pick up to delivery. This means true cradle-to-grave visibility and control, all from one low-cost app. That’s a first.
LaneAxis fully automates carrier & driver compliance with shipper requirements and federal regulations, including tracking CSA scores, thus benefitting all parties transacting within the network.
Additional advantages include exclusive access to load availability, and far fewer disputes over timeliness of priority shipping deadlines.
LaneAxis’ technology gives its users immediate and direct secure data transmission between shipper, carrier and driver in the most efficient manner known to the transportation industry today.
Q-2: Please tell our readers us how it works.
A-2: LaneAxis employs a direct, proprietary, patent pending model to provide A to Z load transparency and visibility.
Transparency and direct visibility allows shippers to create a virtual in-house carrier network visible in real time
The LaneAxis technology manages the virtual in-house relationship for all in-network shippers, carriers, and drivers.
Once registered with LaneAxis, in a simple 3-step process, shippers will enjoy almost full automation of all key functions in the shipper-carrier relationship. It’s very straightforward:
- Carrier accepts the Shipper contract electronically.
- Insurance and compliance are managed and monitored electronically.
- Load pickup, transit, and delivery, are monitored electronically. And any unexpected issues occurring during transport can be managed electronically with immediate notification of the problem.
- At each critical point along the way, an on-demand report featuring every metric needed to be/stay compliant, confident, and headache-free is transmitted in real time.
- Importantly, Real data in Real-Time for accurate reporting and decision making.
Registration is free for the Shipper and the Carrier.
There are no expensive front-loaded fees or charges required to begin using the LaneAxis system.
Also, there are no risky software overhauls or time-consuming training sessions required. The LaneAxis system is very intuitive. It takes what the industry does daily in a cumbersome and error-prone way, and transforms it into a fully automated process. Our step-by-step guides and videos make it very easy to get started and get your freight moving.
Q-4: After initial pilot runs, can that version continue to be used, or is there more development work required?
A-4: Pilots are for shippers to experience the software, collect the important data sets, and strategize and plan on the full deployment transition. As with any software, when you move into large enterprise level applications pilot testing is very common. Our development team can customize the software to suit the particular needs of any shipper.
Q-5: Is the software expense to complete the build-out of the LaneAxis system based on the “Products and Services” section of the Business Plan?
A-5: Software expansion and improvement will never end. Today our primary and most important offering is “visibility”. No shipper has complete visibility into their supply chain. That is step one for every shipper, and until they have that none of their current data reporting is real and they cannot efficiently tap into the ecosystem of data in their network. But once they complete step one, now they can build “outer geofences” for dock scheduling (reducing time, overtime, detention charges, etc.), then they can move into market driven freight because they have the ability to expand their carrier network all while maintaining the automated business processes.
Q-6: R, Where is the call center located and is it operating now?
A-6: Right now the call center is directed to our sales office in Auburn Hills, MI, but we are expanding that and will be operating in Orange County, California.
Q-7: There are 12 members of the management team listed in the Business Plan. When would they be added to company staff?
A-7: Everyone on this team is committed to the total success of the company, and everyone plays an important role. Having said that, we are being very deliberate and strategic with our staffing. If it makes sense and the person fills a key long-term role then we will bring them aboard. Currently our management team is comprised of shareholders and advisors that have a vested interest in the company’s success, and making sure their expertise helps propel that success. Remember, this is an $800 billion industry, so there’s plenty to do for everyone!
Q-8: Is LaneAxis able to obtain fuel rebates?
A-8: Yes. Rebates are very common in this industry and we want to extend that benefit to all our clients. With the traffic we will be able to drive to major truck stops, this will be a huge advantage to the carrier and driver.
Q-9: How are the load payments made: bank transfer, credit card, other?
A-9: Today we electronically bill and will continue to add complete functionality of various payment types. Once shippers start to move forward and fully deploy we will have our process in place, which will be for the shipper to pay Laneaxis. Since the load is confirmed electronically and they have all the information needed to pay the load, we will require the shipper to settle with LaneAxis within 3 days.
If needed, they will have 3 days to move the load into “dispute” status. If not, those loads will be electronically transferred. From the mobile app the carrier will be able to click “quick pay,” and in 24 hours they will receive 97% of the invoice. **Another revenue stream that is on the outer circle of the graph.
Alternately, LaneAxis will settle with the carrier within 30 days of POD.
There are a couple of revenue streams here.
Remember, on an average a load is say $800. If a shipper moves 1000 loads a day that is $800,000 a day in settlements. The majority of our carriers will fall into the 97% category,which will take the 3% ($24 per load revenue for LaneAxis). If 50% (which will be higher) take quick pay, that’s 500 X $24 or $12,000 a day per thousand so if we have 1% of the market in two years or 20,000 loads a day that would be $240,000 in quick pay revenue. The money flow would be 20,000 loads a day at an average cost of $800.00 or $16,000,000.
Q-10: Can revenue be shared with industry consultants?
A-12: Yes, there are high profit margins and several revenue streams in play so there are a variety of revenue-sharing options we can explore with consultants.
Q-11: How about the benefits of your advertising and promotion work accomplished to date?
A-11. We have run an aggressive brand awareness campaign on social media with a focus on Twitter, LinkedIn and Facebook. Our press releases have garnered widespread attention, particularly our in-depth research about the widespread prevalence of large carriers subcontracting their shipments to smaller, independent carriers. We have been covered by major trucking publications both online and in print, and were recently featured in a “tech trends” segment on “NewsWatch TV,” which airs on the Discovery Channel. We’re still getting the word out, but we will ramp our marketing and promotion even more with additional funding this year.
Q-12: In your Pro-forma statements, what is the relationship between daily loads/shipper and loads/dayloads per day by the shippers?
A-12: The pro-forma is based on the current plan. We have four pilots starting in the next 30 days, an additional 26 companies starting in the next 90 days, and 50+ by the end of the year. The pro-forma is based on a small amount of daily loads from the shipper, and each quarter those shippers will increase their daily loads as they move into full integration. Additionally, more shippers will be added and the quarter circles moving forward are based on that type of growth. These are very obtainable numbers.
We are beyond confident that once shippers experience the digital visibility and electronic documentation on every one of their loads they will never go back to tracking shipments through phone calls and paperwork.
Q-13: Do you expect that $2,160,000 of startup expenses would carry you through Q-3 Y 2017 and to profitability?
A-13: I am confident that will happen. My absolute focus is on building LaneAxis into profitability quickly.
Q-14: The RX2 Development Proposal describes 110 development months at a blended rate of $85/hr. for a total of $1,258,400. What is the timeline for completion, and how will testing be carried out?
A-14: This is for the driver social community. This is honestly a rough-draft proposal but will not exceed this number for what we want to build. Once we know we have the funds in place to build this, we will full court press to get the details, get it defined and get it done. I have two IT young guns right now researching and building the framework. It has to be “cool” and what a driver will use all the time. Once defined we will then start the conversations with pilots and frame up timelines and exact costs. They have some brilliant ideas and it’s going to be very cool.
Q-15: In Summary, do I have this right?
LaneAxis provides added value to the shipping contract transaction by allowing for the recapture of up to 20% of shipping costs.
Currently the Domestic and International Trucking Transportation industry uses fax machines, telephone calls, and other manual/paper processes to complete transactions.
And 3rd party logistics companies, brokers and other related service companies coordinate this far flung data and manage connecting shippers and carriers, all for added expense.
LaneAxis’ technology/software automates the data, making it immediately transparent, and creating the long overdue efficiency of a direct shipper to carrier relationship.
Advanced computing, electronic document/data management and hand-held smart gadgets with cameras and GPS (location reporting capabilities) have now made this a possibility.
LaneAxis’ innovative technology modernizes the trucking industry, similar to what has happened in banking, media, and travel. This technology builds a direct, effective and cost-efficient service relationship between all parties in a shipping transaction.
So, the fundamental purpose of the LaneAxis offer is to create a virtual marketplace to allow shippers of freight to more effectively coordinate with the carriers moving their freight by providing visibility at every step of the shipping process.
This is accomplished through cutting edge technology that enables a virtual freight management network to exist.
And this virtual freight management network matters, because it allows the shipper and the carrier to interact directly, without a middleman, allowing both the shipper and carrier to ultimately eliminate a significant cost component in the freight transportation chain.
The Strategic Purpose is to penetrate the marketplace with a disruptive technology, and to be an early mover in a space that is attracting attention and huge investment dollars.
Does that sound about right, Rick?
A-15: Yes, you get it!
For more information go to: http://laneaxis.com/
Paul Ebeling with Rick Burnett