Artificial Intelligence (AI) has ushered in a new era of transformation for several industries. While we have seen AI being used to measure accessibility and AI being used to simplify hiring, AI technologies are also becoming common in logistics. While logistics companies are fast adopting AI technologies, there is a startup that wants to fix inherent redundancies with AI.
We are talking about Lox, the first European AI-driven startup that aims to end incorrect charges being incurred by customers with their deliveries. It is estimated that 1.3m parcels are billed each day incorrectly in Europe. Lox estimates that these incorrect billing results in up to 10 per cent of total delivery costs. With its AI-driven solution, the startup wants to help companies pay the right amount to their carriers.
Lox is solving a universal problem
To understand how Lox helps companies save money on logistics, it is important to understand the cause of this discrepancy. A large number of incorrect pricing is caused by the complexity of invoices and the large volume of parcels delivered daily. The logistics industry is not known for transparency and companies dependent on them usually struggle to reduce their costs.
Lox was founded by former Helloprint employees Anna Rouleau, Dylan Hirsch and Melvil Donnart. Anna says she discovered that “transport services incorrectly charge their customers while working at Helloprint”. This led to the idea of a startup that helps companies identify these incorrect charges and get refunds without any hassle.
How Lox uses AI to save webshops money on logistics
In simple terms, Lox is doing the same service that some apps offer to consumers to save on the hidden charges incurred with credit cards. The ingenuity of Lox lies in the way it works. It offers a dashboard with rate comparison tools to optimise logistics performance. It does so by offering a no-code solution to its customers. It means Lox’s customers don’t need to write a single line of code.
It is also a no cure, no pay solution, meaning customers pay Lox only when they have earned their savings. The secret sauce of the dashboard from Lox is powered by an AI solution that forms the basis of its audit program. This AI program uses machine learning to look at multiple data points and CEO Dylan Hirsch says the platform is capable of checking, reporting and requesting the difference on more than 50 data points.
The most common data points that Lox checks include delivery issues, unused labels, incorrect surcharges and billing errors. There are over 130 carriers in Europe and each carrier uses its own invoicing system. Lox has trained its AI audit program to not only understand the carrier for each invoice added to its system but also analyse them for each line and verify for any incorrect charges.
An AI model generally consists of two phases: a training phase and an inference phase. While the training phase of Lox can be based on carrier invoices, the inference is where it excels. It can identify the gaps exploited by carriers to bill their customers with incorrect charges. With its AI model, Lox is essentially plugging the leak instead of catching the drips.
Another advantage of AI audits is the speed and ability to bring all the inferences in machine-readable format to the dashboard. For instance, Lox uses its audit technology to offer price comparisons on logistics to its customers. This will help companies improve their working capital and streamline their spending on logistics.
Lox is just a year old and is already growing and it supports all the major carriers. However, the startup is quick to note that it will be able to integrate a carrier into its system within a matter of days. While customers can add their carrier portal login credentials to set up the system for once. However, you can also upload your invoices in the form of csv, xml or xlsx files.
In addition to finding the gaps in your invoices, Lox also makes sure that you get your credit back. Lox’s dashboard is automatically updated with details once you receive your credits. It is a solution that many companies need but probably never thought of investing time to understand or find a solution.
What’s the challenge ahead for Lox
As the first European startup to solve this problem, Lox is in a unique space. It is solving a problem that many companies would not have noticed or found the margin to be small to spend their energy and resources on solving. With its tailor-made solution, Lox is making it easy to plug those gaps and earn the credits back.
However, carriers are fast identifying these redundancies in their system and are taking action. One of the principal drivers behind this changed behaviour is sustainability. While it will be a long process for carriers to build a transparent system where they don’t overcharge their customers, they will eventually get there. The day when carriers get their billing right, Lox will need to pivot and its current growth suggests that the startup is capable of change.