Two months ago, Fr8 Network CEO Jon Fox (looking to disrupt a 700 billion dollar Freight Industry) announced his intention in a telegram group to do an Initial Coin Offering (ICO), offering a private sale discount of 30% with a minimum investment of 10k USD! For those who may not know, the process of offering an ICO means that the startup firm is allowing investors to purchase some units of a new cryptocurrency or token in exchange for another type of cryptocurrency. This process allows early investors, motivated to buy the cryptocoins, to get in on a deal that will hopefully lead to a new development and increased returns on the initial investment if the new development is successful.
Transportation has been one of the many industries experiencing difficulty due to the many people and processes involved, as well as the dynamic elements of brokering contracts, delivery of raw materials, and the increasing automation of skilled labor processes. Blockchain technology provides a solution for these industries, allowing them to network and to create a complex system that is manageable and trustworthy.
Fr8 Network developed a whitepaper, outlining the history and difficulties of the freight industry and the company’s proposed business plan for meeting the challenges of that industry. These challenges include but are not limited to theft and fraud, high cost of tracking, shrinking driver supply, environmental impacts, price manipulation, and poor capacity planning. As Fr8 states, “Demand is exceeding supply, yet there are tons of empty trucks on the road. This huge discrepancy highlights a massively inefficient market.” Increasing profitability in a declining, stagnant, ineffective market is a daunting task, but it is not altogether impossible. Exploring the value of blockchain for the rejuvenation of a business or the improvement of logistics models may be what is needed, especially if technology has been something that has previously been difficult to integrate or market processes are not as efficient as they could be.
Fr8 defines itself as a “next generation long-haul logistics company that solves the inefficiencies in logistics landscape through the adoption of technology.” Its intention is to utilize the potential power of blockchain technology to generate a network that systematizes the shipping process from beginning to end, including customer needs to transport logistics to truck driver’s GPS system to the integration of other business software to final delivery.
Through blockchain’s shared ledger process, Fr8’s intention is to eliminate the need for brokerage within the system, allowing shippers and carriers to conduct business in a one-on-one transaction. This leads to a more transparent, time-efficient, and money-saving process. Time-efficiency leads to savings due to reduced operational costs, while the transparency leads to a customer-responsive environment which cultivates an environment of trust.
The decentralized protocol encourages a cohesive, seamless process, thereby increasing the value chain and redistributing revenue. Fr8 indicates that the network is a “set of decentralized applications designed to connect the freight industry’s fractured value chain by transparently connecting key stakeholders, removing high-cost arbitrage, increasing efficiencies, and re-aligning incentives to deliver increased value to all players.” Fr8 services include a transparent Fr8 Board, token, proprietary rating system, settlement services, global and supply chain expansion, and value-added services, all rooted in their use of Blockchain technology.
What is even more interesting about Fr8 Network is its ability to look toward and plan for the future. Blockchain technology, while able to organize and streamline processes currently, also has the potential to inform Artifical Intelligence (AI) and automation. These two things have been carefully considered by Fr8 for the purpose of transportation logistics. Fr8 is working toward self-driving trucks and plans to be the first to market and utilize them, offering an entirely new and innovative range of solutions for both consumers and manufacturers. Furthermore, they are investigating ways in which they can partner with auto manufacturers and IOT technology providers to establish collaborative efforts that will lead to an entirely new transportation system.
The process of revolutionizing an archaic transportation system is not easy. Fr8 Network is finding ways to utilize the power of blockchain technology for this purpose. Through the creation of logistics systems like the bi-directional recommendation engine, as well as through the use of booking and smart contracts, Fr8 hopes to overcome issues inherent in the shipment process. Additionally, shipment-tracking, proof of delivery, and settlement can all be resolved more easily in a technology-rich transportation environment. The goal of Fr8 is to ensure that all stakeholders are provided equal access to an improved and beneficial process.