Why We Invested: Nowports
July 1st - 2021
By Jillian Cohn, Mouro Capital
We first met Alfonso de los Rios and Maximiliano Casal, the co-founders of Nowports, in May 2020 toward the start of COVID. At that time, it was not yet obvious the transformative impact that the pandemic would have on the global trade, commerce, and financial services.
But since that initial meeting, a few things happened in the world of trade and logistics. We watched for a week as the Ever Given blocked the Suez Canal and impacted the delivery of goods globally. We’ve seen an unprecedented rise in prices of inputs, are grappling with a shortage of goods, and companies everywhere are dealing with the impacts of a bullwhip effect that will impact consumers for many months to come. Today, global shipping costs are between 150-400% higher than they were at the beginning of 2021 and only 40% of ocean vessels are arriving on time versus a historical average of 70%.
The need for transparency, efficiency, and real-time access to data in shipping has never been more critical.
And Nowports is working hard to solve this problem by developing a complete operative system for logistics teams in Latin America, a region which has seen imports and exports increase nearly 10% annually since 2015 and where similar growth levels are expected over the next decade.
Alfonso and Max have a deep understanding of the region and the industry. They are building Nowports by combining the best features of a traditional freight forwarder with a tech-enabled business built for scale. They are passionate about delivering an unmatched solution to their clients and committed to helping move the whole market forward.
And Nowports is moving fast. Launched in late 2018 and graduating from YC’s W2019 batch shortly thereafter, Alfonso and Max were off to the races. Since then, they have built up a large and diverse customer base, recruited an incredible team of experienced logisticians, and opened offices across the Latin American region to be close to their clients.
Now, Nowports is ready to double down on its most important trade lanes as well as broaden its product suite in order to more completely serve their customers’ needs and better support their clients’ ability to grow. Soon Nowports will be offering trade finance and insurance products at scale. In line with our thesis on embedded finance, we believe logistics providers have a strong and clear use case for offering embedded financial products, and this is only one component of Nowports’ vision to build out a one-stop solution for their clients. We couldn’t be more excited to join Alfonso, Max, and the whole Nowports’ team on their journey to create the new standard for international logistics in Latin America.