San Francisco-based logistics data analytics startup ClearMetal announced it has raised $15 million in a fresh round of funding led by Eclipse Ventures, bringing the total investment in the company to $31 million to date. ClearMetal is pioneering the continuous delivery experience (CDX), which enables companies to be quick on their feet by continuously adapting operations to suit customer expectations.
ClearMetal stresses that traditional supply chain software vendors have "overpromised and underdelivered" because their ideas about visibility are often static. Supply chains of the future will need real-time visibility to stay on top of continuously evolving customer needs.
"With this infusion of capital and the additions to our leadership team, we are primed to help level the logistics playing field with CDX in 2020. The world needs a CDX platform now more than ever," said Adam Compain, CEO of ClearMetal, said in his statement.
To optimize logistics operations and improve their efficiency, understanding data is paramount. ClearMetal points to the Amazon Effect, which is steadily raising customer expectations on delivery and providing improved visibility options for customers to track their deliveries. Companies that do not have the scale or reach of Amazon tend to lose out in this race, as they cannot hope to compete with the e-commerce behemoth's efficiency.
ClearMetal makes its case here, promising to digitally transform a company's logistics operations in less than eight weeks, even if the company has zero IT systems in place.
Over the past year, ClearMetal attracted several Global 1000 industrial clients and consumer product firms like Panalpina and Georgia-Pacific, while adding employees from logistics majors like Llamasoft, INTTRA, Tradeshift and E2Open.
"ClearMetal is leading the development of a truly intelligent supply chain solution in global freight transportation," said Lior Susan, founding partner of Eclipse Ventures. "The only way to solve an evolving supply chain is with a continuous methodology, and ClearMetal is the leading company at enabling the world's largest retailers and manufacturers with differentiated product delivery and customer experience."
Logistics is a complicated affair, with even large stakeholders finding it hard to predict market volatility — a task made more difficult by overreliance on spreadsheets and legacy systems that impede real-time visibility. ClearMetal leverages artificial intelligence to make sense of the different streams of data that flow into the company's database.
ClearMetal uses data to predict inventory needs based on seasonal trends, helping companies keep their inventories stocked at all times. Anticipating spikes in orders and stocking helps companies save considerably in logistics costs. For instance, retailers that procure goods from across the globe can trim costs by hauling merchandise by sea rather than airfreight if they have greater clarity about where consumer trends are going.
"The global supply chain is suffering from billions of dollars of inefficiency as a result of not having the intelligence needed to handle the scope and complexity of today's data," Compain said. "As pioneers in CDX technology, we are situated clearly on the industry's leader board and look forward to continuing to help some of the world's top companies drive greater profitability in the supply chain."