Convoy load board relaunches under new ownership

Updated Feb 29, 2024

Trucking news and briefs for Friday, Feb. 23, 2024:

New 'Convoy Platform' relaunches for carriers to connect with Flexport Freight shippers

After purchasing the technology and intellectual property of then-defunct Convoy digital freight network and load board, Flexport is relaunching the service as the Convoy Platform.

Convoy shut down in October, citing the freight recession and other economic factors as the primary reasons for its collapse. The shutdown left numerous owner-operators and small fleets in the lurch with unpaid freight bills.

Flexport in November acquired Convoy’s technology and intellectual property and is now opening the load board for business once again. 

The new Convoy Platform connects small carriers with shippers and brokers looking for near-real-time visibility and competitive rates to efficiently manage their capacity needs, the company said. For its initial launch, the Convoy Platform is only open to carriers, who will gain access to freight from the Flexport Freight brokerage through the Convoy app.

[Related: Convoy closing down, firing all employees amid 'massive freight recession']

Flexport also plans to expand the offerings of the Convoy Platform for brokers in Q2 2024 with fraud detection technology and ongoing automated predictive performance scoring and quality control.

Flexport Freight is currently the only broker on the platform, but the company said in a statement to Overdrive that its "strategic focus is on building brokerage partnerships to scale the platform and provide owner-operators with as many high-quality freight options backed by market-leading fraud detection technology and ongoing, automated predictive performance scoring as possible."

"Today's launch of the Convoy Platform furthers Flexport's product vision to build a true one-stop-shop to ship any product, in any quantity, between any two places in the world," said Flexport CEO Ryan Petersen. "As a neutral, end-to-end supply chain platform, we're able to bring together every party in global logistics with one common mission: make global commerce so easy there's more of it."

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Flexport EVP and Head of Trucking Bill Driegert said the company is “thrilled to restore this transformative trucking technology to the industry. The Convoy Platform will provide an effortless, fully integrated experience for shippers and brokers while offering easy access and execution of freight to thousands of owner-operators and small carriers.”

For carriers, the Convoy Platform aims to enable them to find and book loads from vetted brokers and shippers, Flexport said. Carriers will have 24/7 access to the load board in the Convoy app, where they can book loads at the listed rate or have the option to bid. Carriers can request detention and lumper fees, track their fleet, and manage their load paperwork on the app. The Convoy app also facilitates same-day and next-day QuickPay options.

The Convoy app is free for carriers, who can sign up using their MC/DOT number and by verifying their insurance. Currently, the app offers local, regional, and long-haul full truckload freight for 53-foot dry vans.

[Related: Convoy's collapse: Was the tech worth the hype?]

Teamsters voice opposition to Kentucky autonomous truck bill

A bill introduced in Kentucky earlier this year would clear the way for fully autonomous vehicles to operate in the state.

House bill 7 would create a regulatory framework for the operation of fully autonomous vehicles on public highways, establish requirements for autonomous vehicles and automated driving systems, establish requirements for proof of insurance or self-insurance in the amount of $1 million for death or bodily injury and property damage for personal and commercial fully autonomous vehicles, and more. It also includes provisions that exempt fully autonomous vehicles from regulations that apply to human drivers.

The bill passed the Kentucky House by a 61-31 vote. Yet  an amendment was included in the passed version that would require a human operator inside any fully autonomous vehicle “for which the declared gross weight of the vehicle and any towed unit is more than 62,000 pounds,” through July 31, 2026. The operator in these vehicles would be in place “to monitor the performance of the vehicle and intervene if necessary.”

[Related: California reignites driverless-truck ban]

Members of the Teamsters union, along with police officers, firefighters and others, gathered Thursday at the state capitol in Frankfort to demand that Kentucky senators vote “no” on the bill.

"We cannot let California's Big Tech write laws for our state. Lawmakers need to pass legislation that's by and for Kentucky residents," said Teamsters General Secretary-Treasurer Fred Zuckerman. "Senators need to preserve good union jobs, safe streets, and the will of the people by stopping this bill dead in its tracks."

RK Logistics acquires New York’s On Time Trucking

RK Logistics Group Holdings has expanded its network with the acquisition of New York-based On Time Trucking.

A local trucking and logistics company based in Farmingdale, New York, On Time Trucking has more than four decades of experience serving the region providing regional less-than-truckload (LTL) freight delivery, with specific expertise and capabilities in high-value, local interline services encompassing New York City’s five boroughs, New Jersey and Long Island.

Said Joe Maclean, chairman and chief executive officer of RK Logistics Group Holdings, “This is a highly strategic acquisition for RK that allows us to offer lithium-ion battery and material storage services to support our energy transition customers on the East Coast.”

Maclean added that On Time Trucking’s founder, Daniel Leitgeb, will continue leading the company as its President, ensuring a smooth transition and maintaining the exceptional service standards that have defined the brand.

An asset-based company, On-Time Trucking operates a fleet of tractors, trailers and straight trucks, supported by a team of 100 employees and a modern 60,000 square foot, 40-dock-door warehousing facility in Farmingdale. On Time Trucking’s portfolio offers a variety of logistics, inventory support and local and regional delivery services. These include consolidation and distribution, general warehousing, pick and pack, labeling and fulfillment, and expedited, white glove and lift-gate service for same-day, next day, or deferred volume truckload and LTL shipments.

On-Time Trucking joins existing RK Logistics operations in providing warehousing, transportation and related supply chain management services. The organization maintains a network of facilities in Northern California, as well as in Michigan, Texas and Arizona.