Investment Memos
September 5, 2021
Reilly Brennan

Our first Trucks Growth Fund investment: Gatik AI, building the autonomous middle mile

After the launch of the Trucks Growth Fund in Q2 this year, we were fortunate to obtain an allocation in the Series B of Gatik AI ($85M round led by Koch Disruptive Technologies). Gatik makes autonomous trucks for short-haul B2B logistics (their paid customers are Walmart, Loblaw and other large commerce players).

About Gatik:

Gatik is building B2B autonomous vehicles for the $120 Billion short-haul logistics market. Unlike automation of large commercial vehicles such as Class 8 trucks, Gatik opts for light- and medium-duty commercial vehicles. They typically travel the same route over and over again for the customer, getting better at it as they go. This is one of the core benefits of structured autonomy.

As we have seen in other forms of autonomy, the selection of vehicle typically has a large bearing on the type of service you offer. Gatik's selection of these vehicles point the company toward automating commercial trips between distribution centers (aka 'DCs') and between DCs and storefronts; they do not automate trips to end users or create small delivery robots as has been the typical path for local logistics automation. Gatik aims build the best service for automating commercial routes. They are not building a consumer-facing tool; their service is available only for enterprise clients like groceries and retailers who move large quantities of goods in fixed routes from DCs to smaller locations and back all day.

We first invested in Gatik’s seed round in Q2 of 2018. Since then, Gatik has been live and generated six figures in revenue per vehicle per year in revenue with customers such as Walmart and Loblaw. They will be active and begin making deliveries for two more large players to be announced later this year. Gatik's number of autonomous deliveries is in 6 figures with a 99% on-time delivery record and 100% safety record, and recently formed a strategic partnership with Isuzu to build an electric, autonomous medium duty truck.

The reason why we were able to obtain an allocation in this round is because Trucks Venture Fund 1 led the seed round in Gatik in 2018 and we have stayed close with the founders. This is, in fact, our entire thesis for Trucks Growth Fund: to invest in the later rounds of our portfolio companies from the Trucks Venture Capital core funds. Trucks evaluates over 1000 new transportation startups per year, and makes 6-8 new investments from its core seed funds every 12 months.

To join the Trucks Growth Fund as an individual, you must be an accredited investor and complete the signup form here. If you sign up prior to this Tuesday, you can still make the deadline for our next investment.

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