Ryder launches USD50m corporate VC fund

Ryder System, a specialist in supply chain, dedicated transportation and commercial fleet management solutions, has launched RyderVentures, a new corporate venture capital fund to invest in and partner with start-up companies that are developing new technologies and business models that deliver advancements and automation in the logistics and transportation industries.

RyderVentures is targeting USD50 million in investments over the next five years. The focus is on start-up companies that are tackling disruptions in the supply chain, driven by accelerating demand for e-commerce fulfilment, asset sharing, next-generation vehicles, automation, and data analytics, among others.

“Ryder has a strong history in leveraging emerging technologies that help make our business and, ultimately, our customers’ businesses better and more competitive,” says Karen Jones, chief marketing officer and executive vice president of new product innovation at Ryder. “With RyderVentures, our goal is to identify earlier in the process those new technologies that address our customers’ pain points and work alongside the start-ups developing them to speed the solutions to market. We’re looking for innovative technologies from start-ups with strong growth potential but need the expertise of an industry leader with the depth and breadth of experience that comes with nearly 90 years in logistics.”

With more than 50,000 customers including some of the biggest brands across more than 20 industries and relationships with some of the world’s leading original equipment manufacturers, Ryder is in a unique position to help start-ups accelerate their development, pilot and perfect their products in real use cases, speed their products to market, and scale for wide-spread adoption.

Additionally, the company brings experience in creating its own successful start-up COOP by Ryder – a first-of-its-kind, peer-to-peer commercial truck sharing platform. Ryder has also partnered with several technology start-ups to develop its RyderShareTM product, a real-time visibility and collaboration platform for supply chain, as well as worked with other new players leading the charge in electric and autonomous vehicles, charging infrastructure, and smart warehousing.

“With their decades of expertise and engaged executive mentorship, Ryder knows how to help start-ups maximise potential,” says Farzin Shadpour, vice president at Plug and Play, the world's largest innovation platform that brings together the best start-ups and the world’s largest corporations. “We’ve been working with Ryder since 2017 to accelerate the development of some of the greatest emerging technologies. They’ve been an invaluable partner.”

In addition to working with numerous start-ups and accelerators, Ryder continues to collaborate with venture capital funds focused on delivering advancements in logistics and transportation.

“Ryder has been extremely helpful in Autotech’s diligence of ground transport start-ups,” says Quin Garcia, managing director at Autotech Ventures, an early stage venture capital firm focused on innovation in ground transportation. “We’re excited that they are ready to take the next step with their own corporate venture capital arm, where making direct investments will allow Ryder to further align incentives with start-ups, while continuing our partnership to combine Ryder’s scale with innovative start-ups to advance the future of mobility.”