The logistics industry needs to digitize. An interview with Simon Kurbiel, co-founder and regional director of CEE Tennders

The logistics industry needs to digitize. An interview with Simon Kurbiel, co-founder and regional director of CEE Tennders

Tennders is a Spanish start-up providing subscription-based road transport network management software, which recently entered the Polish market and established its hub in Krakow, Poland. Their mission is to lead the industry towards digitization, which can not only help reduce the negative environmental impact of road transport, but also solve other problems of the sector, including those resulting from its fragmentation.

Many industries are currently facing challenges due to the impact of their operations on the environment and the need for changes to protect it. How does this look in the logistics industry?

The environmental impact of road freight transport also represents a complex challenge for companies in the supply chain. The transport industry is responsible for approximately 25% of total greenhouse gas emissions in the EU and the UK. According to the European Environment Agency, most of this comes from road transport with approximately 72%.

The most important factor is the current difficulty in measuring, reporting, and reducing Scope 3 emissions. Tier or Scope 3 is a category comprising a company’s indirect GHG emissions, from materials and the supply chain to the end use of a product or service. Between 70% and 80% of any company’s carbon footprint in the supply chain comes from Scope 3 emissions.

These emissions are generally the most difficult to measure for the simple reason that they are generated outside the company’s operations. Both data collection and emission reduction actions require collaboration with suppliers, who are vital to tracking the data.

Any company involved in transport, logistics, and supply chain probably knows they must be prepared to deal with all this. We are also aware of this and have already started working on it. Tennders FMS can cross-reference needed data from load, truck, and route to begin measuring and provide a first report of scope 3 emissions and empty km. We call it our emissions calculator.

We have a long way to go, in which we have set out to improve our measurement capability and provide our users with mitigation roadmaps. But, yes, Tennders is already working on it. We have a solid starting point for the land-based supply chain to begin to have visibility of its environmental impact.

Are environmental issues the only problems that transportation companies currently face?

Absolutely not. While environmental sustainability is a critical concern, the transportation industry is navigating through many equally pressing challenges. Let me outline a few key issues.

Firstly, there’s the operational complexity. Companies are overwhelmed with managing multiple systems for different tasks. Another major challenge is the financial pressure from rising costs and delayed payments. 

For example, we have seen significant toll increases in countries like Germany and Austria, but rates from customers don’t adjust as quickly. Moreover, the current economic conditions have led to an increase in late payments, especially in Spain. At Tennders, we understand that cash flow is king, and we address these issues with our quick pay program -an option only available in Spanish transport companies at the moment-, ensuring carriers can receive payments within just three days. 

The market competitiveness, now we watch an oversupply of trucks and a lack of load. It’s a challenging environment. The companies hardly grow in this market. 

How do your solutions aim to help solve these problems? What sets Tennders apart from its competitors?

Tennders is designed to address these multifaceted challenges directly. Our customers approach us with a diverse set of needs for system upgrades, and we respond by ensuring they can have the system tailored to their needs.

Through our Freight Management System (FMS), we are committed to delivering constant value to our clients. This commitment is manifested in increasing revenue, minimizing time spent on manual tasks, and fostering a community where logistics partners can connect and collaborate. Our platform is designed to replace other systems that are being used in the logistics world. You can have one system of Tennders rather than two or three different systems. 

On the financial front, Tennders’ quick pay program developed in Spain is a game-changer, allowing transport companies to receive payments within three days. This significantly improves cash flow and financial stability, allowing companies to focus on growth rather than worrying about financial liquidity.

Moreover, we have built a platform to connect your truck to your supplier and your load to the supplier. It offers advanced tools for growing your business network, helping companies maximize their earnings while reducing unnecessary mileage, which also contributes to environmental sustainability efforts.

What sets Tennders apart is our business model. We are not just offering a software solution; we are providing a strategic partnership that helps our clients move their freight, move their trucks, and find new companies to work with. Finally, we offer a system that is relevant, effective, and tailored to the evolving needs of the transportation industry. 

How does your freight management system work, and what benefits does it offer users?

Tennders FMS is a SaaS platform consisting of a modular system that our users can adapt according to their needs through a subscription. It changes several time-consuming tasks with management tools that centralize information with automated functions to simplify updating and notification tasks. 

Along these lines, industry players connect with each other through various channels, and this generates very inefficient transactions. The FMS simplifies this process by bringing all the stakeholders under one roof, facilitating collaboration. Users can choose the list of partners that best suits the needs of the cargo, thus unifying information, reducing management time, and creating much more efficient decision-making processes. 

On the other hand, reliability is essential in a sector as fragmented as freight transport, but for the same reason, it isn’t easy to achieve. Having validation and control processes in place when working with new companies is crucial. However, controlling the quality and security of these operations is difficult if the information is scattered in many places or unavailable when required. In this sense, the FMS also optimizes the validation and registration of new companies with the quality control tool. It allows the digitization of quality standards and includes automation to reduce this process to a few clicks.

Further tasks that the FMS manages to speed up through automation and process optimization are creating and managing documents such as the transport order. Our tool has all the key information fields for transparent and efficient contracting. Once the transaction price has been agreed, the system generates and sends the document to the transport provider with a few clicks.

Among other functionalities, it also has a financial module to manage invoicing, facilitating the creation of invoices and credit notes in a streamlined approach. It allows the tracking of documentation required for collections such as CMRs and the centralization of accounting for quick reporting and exporting of information.

What further development plans do you have – both in terms of technological innovation and in terms of foreign expansion?

We are currently raising a Series A investment round of EUR 5 million, of which we have already closed EUR 1.5 million. Overall, our goal is to continue to grow in market share, revenues, users, and customers. In addition, we are focused on strengthening our position in Europe and becoming an industry benchmark in terms of sustainability. 

Another crucial part of our plan is the expansion and strengthening of our team. We constantly seek talent to add value and help us achieve our goals. This strategy will allow us to expand our presence, diversify our offer, and strengthen our market position.

Simon Kurbiel – Tennders Co-founder and Director of CEE Region

Tennders co-founder and Director of CEE Region, Simon Kurbiel, was born and raised in Radom, Poland. He has an extensive background in logistics and international freight forwarding. Simon is also specialized in dangerous goods logistics and transport safety consultancy.

Simon has therefore advised and trained more than 300 companies like DHL, FedEx, TNT, in the field of dangerous goods transport. He has also managed logistics for many of Europe’s leading oil and gas companies, like Schlumberger, Halliburton and Weatherford.

Between 2014 and 2018, Simon was part of C.H. Robinson, one of the leaders in international logistics. He worked as an Account Manager in the Warsaw and Barcelona offices. He was the first person to manage radioactive cargo for the first time in the history of C.H. Robinson.

During his time at CH Robinson, Simon met Mike Cuignet, co-founder and current CEO of Tennders.

Simon was introduced to Mike’s entrepreneurial plans and caught his innovative vision that more optimized and sustainable transport is possible. The two joined forces with the other co-founders to found the start-up Tennders in 2021. Today, Simon is the Director of the CEE Region of the Tennders Poland branch and an indispensable leader in the day-to-day running and culture of the company.

Last Updated on March 11, 2024 by Anastazja Lach