Roadie’s new funding round comes with an orange twist – FreightWaves – Mark Solomon

Delivery firm Roadie Inc. said today it has landed $37 million in funding from an investor group that includes retailing giant The Home Depot, Inc., (NYSE:HD) one of Roadie’s customers.

The round, which brings Roadie’s total funding to $62 million, is unusual because retailers, and especially customers of their delivery vendors, typically shy away from such endeavors. Home Depot–the company known for its famous orange aprons–will not take an active role in Roadie’s operations as part of the funding arrangement, Roadie Founder and CEO Marc Gorlin said in an e-mail today. Both companies are based in Atlanta.

Other investors in the round include Warren Stephens, a billionaire investment banker, and TomorrowVentures, a firm run by Eric E. Schmidt, who was executive chairman of Google Inc. and parent Alphabet Inc. from 2001 to 2017.

Last September, Home Depot began same-day deliveries in its top 35 markets using Roadie and same-day delivery firm Deliv Inc. Online orders placed before noon are delivered the same day, with shipping costs starting at $8.99.

In a statement today, Mark Q. Holifield, executive vice president of The Home Depot Supply Chain, said the investment in Roadie furthers the retailer’s plan to reach 90 percent of the U.S. population with same day and next-day deliveries.

Roadie launched in 2015 with what it called an “on-the-way” model which matched same-day delivery origins and destinations with the unused capacity of vehicles already making trips on those routes. Begun as a consumer-to-consumer service, Roadie now handles deliveries from businesses of various types. It recently entered the grocery delivery segment as part of a consortium of vendors delivering for Walmart Inc. (NYSE:WMT).

Roadie today delivers to more than 11,000 cities and towns nationwide with a crowdsourced network of more than 120,000 drivers. It foresees strong demand from retailers and other businesses looking to offer same-day deliveries without the cost and resources needed to operate an in-house fleet.

The new funding will be used to expand Roadie’s on-the-way capacity, and to improve real-time digital matching of untapped capacity to delivery demand, Gorlin said.

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