Partners Ted Alling, Barry Large and Allan Davis previously founded Access America Transport, which they sold freight broker Coyote Logistics Inc. in 2014 before Coyote itself was purchased by UPS Inc. last year for around $1.8 billion. The three are currently working together at another Chattanooga-based venture incubator called Lamp Post Group, and will be joined by former Techstars managing director Jon Bradford, who will serve as Dynamo's entrepreneur-in-residence, helping to mentor the participating firms.
With Dynamo, Alling, Large and Davis say they’re looking to “change the face of supply chain management” by investing in early stage companies in the logistics space. The goal, according to the founding partners, is to drive progress in the “lagging logistics industry to create efficiencies and faster business results with technologies and practices ranging from the ‘Internet of things’ and robotics to big data, drones and beyond.”
“Transportation and logistics is a blue-collar industry--still relying on aging technology and infrastructure--that has been overlooked by venture capital for decades, which presents Dynamo with the perfect storm,” Alling, managing director, said of the program. “More freight passes through Chattanooga, TN, every day than any other metropolitan area in America. As a result, Chattanooga has become a major logistics hub for the eastern United States, with large-scale shippers, carriers, warehousers, barge operators and rail yards in our backyard.”
“Dynamo has put together an amazing crew of mentors and partners from the transportation and logistics industry, including the original founders of Access America Transport, who built a business with over $400 million in revenue and sold it to Coyote,” said Dynamo entrepreneur-in-residence Jon Bradford. "With my accelerator experience personally running 10 programs -- including, most recently, Techstars London -- we have created a world-class accelerator that can truly change the logistics industry for the better.”
The three-month Dynamo accelerator program will run from July 6 to October 4, 2016, and the company will also offer $12 million in early stage funding to “opportunities with logistics businesses that may not fit the criteria for the accelerator but share its mission to enact change within the logistics industry.”
“The Dynamo accelerator and the fund are managed by separate entities, but will share resources and work together to create the most comprehensive funnel of transportation and logistics companies in the world to make meaningful lead investments in top-performing companies that come through the accelerator,” added Alling.
FedEx Corp. sponsors the similar EPIcenter Logistics Innovation Accelerator, also created to help startups bring innovative logistics products and technologies to market, located in Memphis, Tenn.