Salesforce backs $7.5M round into fleet management startup Automile


The massive amount of administrative work involved in managing a company’s vehicle fleet can be overwhelming even for the most well-staffed operations department. But according to Automile Inc., it doesn’t have to be.

The Palo Alto, Calif.-based offers a service that promises to reduce the load on logistics personnel using real-time sensory data from the field. Automile’s efforts have recently attracted a $7.5 million investment led by cloud-focused fund SaaStr. TechCrunch reports that the round also saw the participation of Salesforce Ventures, Dawn Capital, Point Nine Capital and Skype co-founder Niklas Zennstrom.

The cash infusion will help Automile expand its customer base, which already includes more than 6,000 firms ranging from small businesses to global brands such as Nestlé SA. These companies rely on its service to handle most aspects of their fleet management operations, starting with dispatching.

Automile provides a visual tracking console that makes it possible to keep tabs on where drivers are headed using location data from their smartphones. For organizations that require more fine-grained visibility, the startup offers a sensory kit called Automile Box that’s designed to be installed under a vehicle’s dashboard and can collect additional details such as the length of trips. Dispatchers can use the information to quickly find drivers in a given area when a local client or colleague requires their services.

Decision-makers, meanwhile, have access to a historical view of driver activity that Automile says is useful for assessing operations. Its service displays most of everything from speeding incidents and driving trends to vehicle maintenance schedules. According to the startup’s website, this data can not only help streamline fleet management but also reduce insurance expenses in certain circumstances.

Automile offers its service in three tiers priced at $5.90, $14.90 and $19.90 per car per month, respectively. Customers receive their sensory kits for free as part of the latter two plans.

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