Jul 04, 2014

New Mobile Apt Matches Truck Drivers and Cargos in Brazil

Author: Michael Cordonnier/Soybean & Corn Advisor, Inc.

Transportation problems on Brazilian highways are legendary especially during the peak of the grain harvest and export seasons, but an innovative new technology is helping to make life easier for the thousands of truck drivers who transport the ever increasing Brazilian grain production. A mobile apt similar to the way you can find a taxi in many large cities is being used to match up transportation companies and their cargos with independent truckers.

Launched in early 2014, the SontraCargo apt is in the process of revolutionizing the relationship between transportation companies and truckers in Brazil. Previously, truckers had to look for cargos through cargo agents as they were transporting their current loads hoping to find something that would fit their type of truck and their schedule. This new apt makes that process infinitely easier.

Today, there are more than 500 transportation companies in Brazil listing their cargos on the apt and 10,000 truckers locating cargos that best fits their type of truck, the origin and destination of the cargo, etc. It’s all online and it’s all free.

The director of SontraCargo, Bruno Moreira who is the son of a truck driver, indicated that during one day last week a transportation company arranged 90 different cargos with 90 different truckers, something that was virtually impossible without the new system.

The new technology will certainly improve the lives of independent truck drivers who were at the mercy of transportation agents to arrange for the best cargo to maximize their efficiency. It will also greatly facilitate the operations of transportation companies during peak demand such as during the soybean harvest. These transportation companies are using this system to supplement their own feet operations.

By the end of the year, SontraCargo is expecting to increase the number of cargos listed on their apt by 150%. To do that, they are expecting to increase the number of companies listing cargos from the current 520 to 3,500. They are expecting to increase the number of truckers using the apt from 10,000 to 25,000. Currently there are 500 to 600 cargos listed per day on the apt with most of the listings in southeastern and southern Brazil, but the use of the apt is growing in all regions of Brazil.

The new system is expected to be especially valuable in big grain production states such as Mato Grosso. There are not enough trucks available in the state to accommodate the huge production of soybeans and corn, so as the harvest gets underway, truckers from all across Brazil head to Mato Grosso in search of the profitable long hauls from Mato Grosso to the ports in southern Brazil. This new system will be especially valuable for the 900,000 independent truckers in Brazil whose livelihood relies heavily on hauling grain and other agricultural products.