The COVID-19 pandemic highlighted the importance of truck drivers in the American economy, said Jeff Dema; and Foxpoint is targeting its efforts to ensure that drivers succeed and stay in the demanding industry.
“Being a truck driver is a hard job. They’re gone 250 plus nights a year from their home. It requires lots of concentration and focus to drive the truck, but it also requires good business skills if they decide to become an independent contractor. It’s a great way for people to achieve a middle to upper-middle class income if they’re willing to put in the work. We take great pride in helping people reach the American Dream,” said Dema, the CEO of Foxpoint.
Foxpoint, which is the holding company for OTR Leasing, is a technology-enabled, specialty finance company that leases Class 8 trucks. It specializes in truck acquisitions, lease originations and post-origination support, Dema noted.
“Often our customers are W2 employee drivers for carriers, and they are looking to go out on their own and create their own business as an independent contractor,” he explained. “We help them make that transition by getting them into their own trucks, so that they can be their own boss and have more control over their career.”
Foxpoint launched in 2012, with Dema joining the team as president in 2019. Soon after, Dema transitioned to the role of CEO prior to the COVID-19 pandemic.
“It was a very stressful time for everyone,” Dema said, noting the supply chain shortages and delays in transportation due to the pandemic. “… I think people started to realize the crucial role that truck drivers play, because before, they were forgotten. [Consumers] expect items to be on their store shelves — but when that started to get disrupted, all of a sudden truck drivers got their recognition.”
Throughout 2020 and 2021, Foxpoint’s platform substantially grew, Dema continued. More individuals were interested in becoming independent contractors in the trucking industry, and Foxpoint reached 1,000 leases. To support the Foxpoint’s continued growth, Gordon Brothers — a global advisory, restructuring and investment firm — invested $85 million into the company in 2021. “We were able to secure that funding by just being able to tell our story and show the results of what we’ve been achieving,” Dema said.
The funding was used to refinance existing debt and support the continued expansion of Foxpoint’s fleet, according to the company. Dema also has plans to provide more services to drivers who are planning to become small business owners, he said.
“As we continue to evolve the business, we are looking to expand beyond merely providing truck leases to drivers; we’re looking at expanding services to help them manage their business more effectively,” he explained. “Insurance programs and warranty programs are services that we’re adding into our business model to further help drivers succeed.”
Foxpoint is recognized on Startland News’ 2022 Kansas City Venture Capital-Backed Companies Report. Click here to check out the full report.
Before joining the Foxpoint team, Dema worked in senior executive roles at corporate companies, he recalled; but once he immersed himself into the work of startups, he knew he was hooked. “A little over a decade ago, I got paired up with a private equity firm here in town and learned about small businesses and startups and the entrepreneurial spirit. I just fell in love with that,” Dema shared. “I was able to take the skills I learned in corporate America and apply them to smaller companies at a much faster pace. I love the atmosphere — the ability to pilot different things out to see what works, and build a small core team of highly capable, motivated people.”
Building a company in the Kansas City area has been extremely rewarding, Dema continued. “The talent pool we’re able to access here in Kansas City is terrific,” Dema said. “The work ethic is very, very strong. And frankly, the entrepreneurial spirit that we have within this city and business is a real plus for us.”
NOTE: This entire article was sourced from Startland News