BVL-forum at the transport logistic

Start-ups present themselves

BVL Forum Foto: Karl-Heinz Augustin

The German Logistics Association (BVL) invited five start-ups to a pitching session. The young entrepreneurs presented their business ideas in four-and-a-half minutes.

Digitizing the transport chain's every step and thereby creating transparency: that's the motivation behind logistics start-up Instafreight, presented by Managing Director Philipp Ortwein. Forwarding agents are able to book transports completely online at fixed prices via the online-forwarder's digital platform. "The entire process is digitized and shall additionally be automated in the future," Ortwein explained during his pitch. Another future project: making the platform accessible for everybody, so that every carrier is able to communicate with his shipping agents. The start-up already won the Eco Performance Award for their fair, transparent and sustainable approach at the beginning of the week.

The second presenter was start-up Byrd, which called itself a "personal shipping assistant". Managing Director Alexander Leichter explained the simple idea: "Just take a photo of the object to be sold and upload it to our app – the courier service then stops by and picks up the parcel." The 27-year old describes this service, which is currently available in Berlin and Vienna, as a connecting element between sellers, warehouses and parcel services. Storage and shipping is taken care of by the company of the Austrian, who despite his age already has an interesting biography: studies in Vienna and Cambridge, previously employed in the finance sector, professional rower in Austria's national team. It was important to the BVL to also present the person behind the company. Which is also why the biography of Henning Grimm, Managing Director of Aquaplot, played a role.

His hobby and career complement each other perfectly: the former industrial engineer from Karlsruhe has crossed the Atlantic. Sailing is his passion. Aquaplot thus offers a route planning software for container ships. "In future we also want to offer current information on weather conditions, traffic density and precise arrival times," Grimm explained.

The only pitch participant working in logistics before founding a start-up is Thomas Hahn of Swoplo. The online platform for transportation aids was developed to avoid unnecessary transports, optimize transports and use trucks to their full capacity. "If the pickup of empty transportation aids isn't profitable for you, just sell them via Swoplo," Swoplo explained. Single-use aids are no alternative.

The last presenter was Michael Wax of start-up Freighthub. Born in Munich, he already founded a successful start-up in sensor technology, the logistics start-up Freighthub has been on the market since 2016. "It's our goal to make it possible to book freight transports as quickly as connections for passenger transports – in just a few clicks," Wax explained. The online forwarder digitally processes container transports for sea- and air freights.

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