Money Moves November 12, 2021 at 10:00 am

He left Haiti for U.S. at 15, now he owns trucking company that has made $4M in revenue in 3 years

Abu Mubarik November 12, 2021 at 10:00 am

November 12, 2021 at 10:00 am | Money Moves

Pierre Laguerre, Founder of Fleeting. Photo credit: Black Business

In the early 1990s, Pierre Laguerre decided to migrate to the United States from Haiti in search of economic opportunities when he was 15 years. His dream was to become a neurologist but Laguerre found himself in Brooklyn where gun violence was rife.

“My district Brooklyn was really rough, I mean, the entire country was really rough but that time was really rough and it was much more like a cultural shock for me because the norm in the community was gun violence, drug dealing, seeing young men that look like me getting killed at a young age, going to jail at an early age,” he told Shoppe Black.

Laguerre quickly noticed that if he wanted to become a neurologist, there was no way he could live in his community and become a neurologist and decided to find a way to escape his community.

When he graduated from high school, his uncle took him on a cruise and that changed his perception of his Brooklyn community. He also realized that the world does not revolve around his community.

Laguerre went to college to study electrical engineering but he faced financial difficulties and had to drop out. Nonetheless, he ensured he got his CDL to become a truck driver. He went on to work for SPL Logistics which is one of the largest carriers for three years. Afterward, he went to work for a firm called Performance.

According to him, it was at Performance that his entrepreneurial journey started. He started off with a food delivery business in the same school where he was dropped out. Laguerre initially found his job embarrassing and shameful because he didn’t want to be seen doing a food delivery job.

According to him, he felt like a loser doing delivery service in a school he could not complete even though he was making $93,000 a year. However, his former professor was on hand to encourage him not to take his job for granted. His professor explained to him that more than half of his former colleagues were not going to see $93,000 a year when they graduate.

“That message really resonated with me and a year later, I purchased my own truck and became my own operator,” he said.

At the time he purchased the truck, Laguerre explained that he had little knowledge of operating a business but did commit himself to learn about sound business management. Six months later, he went to study supply chain logistics. Afterward, he took another course on how to become a freight broker.

In 2015, Laguerre started a staffing agency for trucking companies. He hired workers, groomed them, and outsourced them to trucking companies that needed their services. Under 18 months of operation, he grew the revenue of the company to about $2.8 million.

It got to a point where Laguerre had more workers than the trucking companies needed. The entrepreneur decided to open his own trucking company and hire the excess labor. According to him, he scaled the business to over 26 trucks in a year and made over $1 million in revenue.

“What was crazy was that I was running two businesses simultaneously by myself. I didn’t have a team, I couldn’t delegate. I was the driver and the supervisor. On the staffing agency, I was managing about 86 drivers and on the trucking side I was managing about 28 drivers,” he said.

Laguerre operates his businesses under the brand Fleeting. His vision is to create a platform that improves the commercial freight industry by leveraging technology to match truck owners, drivers and shippers, and brokers, according to Shoppe Black.

Recently, Fleeting received a seed round investment of $500,000 from Kyrie Irving, NBA superstar and founder of a new consulting firm, KAI 11 Consulting, and Lockstep Ventures, Black Business reported. It added that Fleeting is now one of the fastest-growing trucking companies in the U.S., having profited nearly $4 million within just three years since it started.

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