We are delighted today to share our investment in Outgo, a revolutionary finance and banking platform for freight carriers and truckers all over North America.
Carriers have it rough out there. When it comes to running a business, owner-operators and truck-drivers alike are habitually disempowered by virtually every player in their value chain: aggressive brokers, punishing rates charged by factorers, formidable competition, delayed payment, and lumpy operating expenses week-to-week. Operating “in the red” is a norm. Even for the most successful carriers, making the most out of every dollar is a tightrope walk. It doesn’t help that a clumsy network of legacy banks, spreadsheets, and predatory factoring services are all trucking carriers have to turn to in managing cash flow.
Today Outgo is introducing to the world a first-of-its-kind platform that brings together a connected debit cash card (with a 0% real-time factoring rate), on-demand low-rate factoring, and smooth invoice management tooling that empowers carriers to operate more soundly – and with more financial autonomy – than ever before.
It is no secret that carriers and truck-drivers represent the most commonly held jobs in the United States, with 3.5 million truck-drivers today. They also sit right in the middle of hundreds of billions of dollars of transactions every year. 95% of all freight carriers operate fewer than 10 trucks: these are small, owner-operator businesses, most of which are in fact single-truck shops. Carrier banking and financial services are long overdue for a few audacious innovators to empower these trucker entrepreneurs with fresh, tech-driven, financially-empowering pathways to grow their businesses; we cannot imagine three people better positioned to do this than the Outgo founders alongside their early team.
Outgo’s CEO Marcus Womack and his co-founders (and long-time collaborators) Ray Fortna and Mike Bohlander bring a powerful blend of experiences, relationships, and savvy to the Outgo mission. This is in no small part due to their leadership experiences across the executive suites of fast-growing companies like Convoy, Uber, and Axon. It is also due to their brilliantly complementary skill-sets across product, tech and operations forged through years of working together – including through the founding of their last startup Familiar which sold to Axon in 2013.
For PSL, our investment in Outgo reflects long-standing experience and interest across both “vertical fintech” and logistics tech, and the team joins several other PSL portfolio companies building in these huge (and timely) categories. Most importantly, we have wanted to back Marcus, Ray, and Mike for years. PSL Managing Director Julie Sandler met Marcus when he and her husband worked together and led the Pacific Northwest’s two Uber offices (engineering/product and business operations respectively) here in Seattle. She also got to know Ray and Mike several years back when Marcus introduced them to PSL when they were exploring potentially starting something new. It is exciting for us to see their “band get back together” and in a category within which the three founders have not only unique experience, but also deep empathy and understanding. We have seen firsthand that this team lives and breathes to empower carriers.
We were delighted to co-lead Outgo’s first financing round of $3.4M alongside Neo, with participation from Bezos Expeditions and some of the foremost angel investors in the freight and fintech worlds. We cannot wait for what’s next on the Outgo journey and are excited to see an already profound, positive impact on carriers and truckers all over.