Karooooo has acquired 70.1% of Picup Technologies (Picup) in a deal valued at R70-million.
Karooooo owns 100% of Cartrack, a mobility software-as-a-service (Saas) platform that maximises the value of automotive and workflow data by providing real-time data analytics solutions for smart transportation.
Cartrack’s offering now reaches beyond connected vehicles, as it assists enterprise customers in digitalising the mobility aspects of their businesses, including the administration of their fleets, management of field workers, operational logistics and last-mile deliveries.
Picup is a founder-led, logistics cloud-based disruptive technology company based in South Africa. The company is a system integration partner of Cartrack and is positioned in the online delivery operational management software industry.
Given that Cartrack’s mobility open-ecosystem platform allows for integration into third-party systems, Picup has been working with Cartrack to address the challenges of last-mile delivery through an integrated offering.
“Picup simplifies transport operations and helps mitigate the risks associated with logistics, specifically in relation to meeting tight delivery timeframes,” says Karooooo in a statement.
“Cartrack customers are now able to manage their own fleets and workflows, interact with specialist courier companies, as well as a network of vetted crowd-sourced drivers, thus enabling them to efficiently scale their e-commerce business, deliveries and general logistics needs.
“The platform allows enterprises and transporters to plan and allocate their loads, access real-time tracking and proof of delivery with automated payments.”
The logistics industry has historically been very inefficient, with many enterprises not optimising their fleets and often having an inflated fleet-size to balance customer demand, notes Karooooo.
“As e-commerce booms, retailers and wholesalers require more efficient, flexible and cost-effective ways to optimise delivery capacity using a cloud solution.
“Picup facilitates an elastic fleet of third-party delivery drivers to handle overflow volumes, allowing clients to plan optimally, without having to factor surge periods into their base operating capacity.”
Picup, a start-up currently completing more than 200 000 monthly deliveries, services large blue-chip enterprises such as Dischem and Pick n Pay.
The company’s scalable business model has gained in relevance post the emergence of Covid-19, offering a meaningful opportunity for expansion, says Karooooo.
“This transaction supports the growth aspirations of Cartrack and Picup as the demand for last-mile delivery escalates at a rapid rate.”
“As we think beyond connected vehicles, it is imperative that our cloud platform is a comprehensive mobility solution that addresses the needs of both our existing and future enterprise customers,” says Zak Calisto, CEO and founder of Karooooo and Cartrack.
“E-commerce transactions across the globe are increasing dramatically and we need to ensure that we are well positioned to assist our enterprise customers in fully digitalising the mobility aspects of their businesses.”
Antonio Bruni, founder and CEO of Picup, and the management team, will remain invested with a 29.9% interest in Picup.
Karooooo has the option to increase its shareholding to 83.5%.