Chudleigh-based Lightfoot, the UK’s leading provider of in-cab driver coaching and engagement technology, has today announced that Volpi Capital has invested in the Devon-based green-tech company.
The business, which rewards smoother and safer driving leading to reductions in accidents, fuel use and emissions in fleets, first developed its technology to help ICE fleets cut costs and improve efficiency. Now, it is carving a niche in the Electric Vehicle (EV) sector using its heritage in EV motors and batteries to give it an edge in range extension.
Lightfoot’s dash-mounted device connects directly to the vehicle’s engine, giving drivers audible and visual nudges, coaching them towards a more efficient style of driving, enhancing fleet compliance and driver wellbeing. Paired with Lightfoot’s smartphone app and rewards platform, which gives ‘elite drivers’ the ability to unlock rewards including weekly cash prizes of up to £200 in The Drivers’ Lottery, this has led to driver engagement levels of over 60%. Elite drivers are those achieving a Lightfoot score of 85% or above. Traditional telematics solutions struggle to achieve engagement levels over 5%.
By engaging with drivers in real time and giving them an opportunity to win prizes for smooth driving, fleets have seen reductions in accidents by as much as 40%, fuel savings and emissions cuts of up to 15% and reductions in wear and tear by up to 45%. This has led to Lightfoot’s adoption by some of the UK’s largest fleets including Tesco, Asda, Virgin Media, Western Power Distribution, Dixons Carphone, and South West Water, as well as partnerships with many of the UK’s leading insurers and brokers.
In EV’s Lightfoot can have an even greater impact, and has been shown to not only increase range by up to 20%, but to maintain this through high driver engagement levels, delivering consistency of driving style and range. This is seen as a vital factor in the migration to EV vehicles as fleets need to be able to plan routes efficiently and reliably, without the worry that drivers will fail to make it to their journey’s end.
Volpi Capital’s investment in Lightfoot will enable the business to extend its reach internationally at the same time as funding R&D.
Mark Roberts, Founder of Lightfoot commented: “Volpi Capital is a great fit for us. They have a strong track record of investing in telematics and fleet management tech businesses and see the competitive advantage that we offer both in relation to ICE fleets, but more crucially in terms of EV fleets.”
Roberts added: “The undeniable truth is that EV fleets cannot be rolled-out effectively until drivers are operating within high efficiency bands time and again. That’s exactly what Lightfoot delivers. Without that certainty, fleets have to base their range and route planning on the least efficient, lowest performing drivers. That’s frankly unworkable, damaging effective electric vehicle fleet management and holding the tide back on transition to EV. With Lightfoot that needn’t be the case.”
Ru Lyon Taylor, CEO of Lightfoot, added: “With Volpi Capital’s backing, we are now in a stronger position than ever to take our technology to a global market. Their investment enables us to progress a number of exciting product developments that will not only reduce fleet fuel costs further, but will enhance both user and fleet manager experiences, enabling businesses to meet their ESG commitments and net zero targets.”
Marco Sodi, Volpi Capital, commented: “As part of our thematic research and investment track record in telematics and fleet management, we immediately identified Lightfoot as a unique and differentiated solution well-suited to provide economic, environmental and safety benefits to both ICE and EV LCV fleets. Road safety and emissions reduction are top of mind for many policy and corporate decisionmakers, where Lightfoot can be a big part of the solution.”
“We believe we can help the team capitalise on these strong market tailwinds, and further accelerate the fantastic momentum Lightfoot has been building up. We see a significant opportunity to enrich the proposition as well as expand the business internationally and are very excited to be partnering with Mark, Ru and the ambitious team on this exciting journey”, adds Mathieu Himpe, Volpi Capital.
Barry Sheehan, Director of Arrowpoint Advisory part of Rothschild & Co, who advised on the deal added: “Lightfoot is one of the most exciting and innovative fleet-industry players we have come across in recent years, with an exceptional product and first-class management team they have built-up unstoppable momentum and disrupted the UK telematics market. There is no telling how far this team and product could go in the UK and abroad.”
To find out more about how Lightfoot can transform your fleet for the better, visit www.lightfoot.co.uk