Interview with Zvi Schreiber, the CEO of Freightos
Mr. Zvi Schreiber a serial tech entrepreneur, is founder and CEO of Freightos. Freightos is the digital booking platform of the half-trillion dollar international freight industry. Previously, Zvi was CEO of Lightech (acquired by GE), and of Unicorn (acquired by IBM). Zvi holds a PhD in computer science from the Cambridge University and is author of Fizz, the history of physics in a novel, and of Money, Going out of Style, which explores money & economics. He is a frequent speaker at industry events and author of various articles, papers and patents.
How would you define the biggest difference for a shipper in using Freightos versus a traditional Freight Forwarder?
Firstly freightos.com is a platform, when shippers use freightos.com they are still receiving service from a freight forwarder or other service provider. We ourselves don’t provide freight services. The difference is that we give shippers the tools to compare prices instantly online, to pay multiple service providers through one platform, and to manage shipments across multiple service providers with one modern digital portal.
The last 3 years were a true rollercoaster in global shipping, did this unstable market circumstance support or harm the development of Freightos?
Interesting question. Yes, you can see how dramatically prices fluctuated these last three years on our Freightos Data portal at freightos.com. This has been mixed for us. In general, uncertainty increases the need for digital platforms because people need alternatives, and we saw our business grow. But at times there were delays which were very hard to predict or avoid and that was frustrating for our customers as well as everyone else.
You are heading the panel discussion “Has air cargo truly gone digital” at WOF Summit Vienna, can you give us a little insight before the event?
These last three years have seen a real transformation in air cargo. And I’m pleased to say that WebCargo by Freightos has been adopted by the industry as the leading digital platform. In 2018 there was only one airline, Lufthansa, that had a limited “API” for digital pricing and booking. Now we have airlines representing over 50% of the world market! And eBookings have grown by more than 100X in the last two years. It’s been really exciting to be part of such a dramatic digital revolution.
You already have experience with the WOF Events in the CEE region, where do you see the biggest advantage of the WOF platform?
I like how WOF brings together all players in the CEE region. Other conferences sometimes neglect this important region with all its economic growth and potential. And for me personally, it’s relatively close to my home in Jerusalem.
What is the biggest challenge for you in digitalization in the next 3-5 years?
I would love to see container ocean liners learning from airlines and adopting digitalization more quickly. Now with the softer market, I hope carriers across all modes will understand the importance of digital channels and how they can improve utilization and yield.
You went public as Nasdaq: CRGO yesterday, what drove that decision?
For Freightos, going public was primarily a way to attract investment, including some very sophisticated investors who focus on public stocks. We also welcome the opportunity as a public company to be more transparent. And perhaps being public will give us the opportunity to make more acquisitions as we’ve done successfully in the past.
Freightos® is the digital booking platform for international shipping. We are inspired by how digitalization improved passenger travel and retail, and are bringing the same benefits to global trade. Faster, more cost-effective, and reliable international shipments, help to expand trade between the people of the world. Using a combination of breakthrough technology, data, and a platform that spans thousands of global logistics providers, importers, airlines, ocean liners, and leading tech players, the Freightos Group business units – Freightos.com, WebCargo, and Freightos Data – are making global trade smoother.