Funding News NYC

Coast Raises $92 Million in New Capital

NEW YORK — Coast, which offers a simple way for companies in the United States to manage fuel and fleet spending, has raised $92 million in new funding. The round includes $25 million in equity capital led by existing investors, including BoxGroup, Avid Ventures, Accel, Insight Partners, and Better Tomorrow Ventures, as well as new investor Vesey Ventures. The company also secured $67 million in committed debt capital from Silicon Valley Bank and TriplePoint Capital.

[Photo above: Coast founder Daniel Simon.]

For the nearly one million American businesses that collectively operate around 40 million vehicles in their commercial fleets – including field service businesses like HVAC, plumbing, landscaping, pest control, construction, government fleets and long-haul trucking – managing expenses in the field is a major challenge. Over the decades, a handful of now very large incumbent payment solutions have emerged to serve fleet-operating companies’ needs with fuel cards, to allow fleet managers to set field-specific controls, like restricting purchases to only fuel products, or tracking expenses on a per-vehicle basis. The fleet fuel payments on these specialized cards add up to a staggering $120 billion annually in the US.

Coast, led by founder and CEO Daniel Simon, reimagines the fleet payments product category, enabled by mobile technology and state-of-the-art vehicle data and telematics.

Coast’s software gives fleet managers powerful policies and controls that they can tailor to the on-the-job needs of different employees and vehicles in their fleets. It uses real-time information that employee drivers provide through their phones, as well as data from the onboard computers of company vehicles, to authorize or flag transactions. For example, the fleet manager of a commercial construction HVAC company could receive an alert if a driver purchased unleaded gas when driving a company diesel vehicle, indicating potential abuse; automatically block a transaction when the attempted purchase is far from the current GPS location of the vehicle; or pre-approve a one-time extra purchase of on-the-road supplies at Home Depot with a simple, automated SMS workflow.

“We’ve been amazed by the pace of execution of Coast’s business since we first invested in the company at its founding, as well as by the scope and consistency of Daniel’s vision for financial tools for fleet operating industries,” BoxGroup Partner Adam Rothenberg said about the round. “In the current market, it’s more important than ever to back companies that have shown they can achieve really great unit economics by serving a well-understood need. We were thrilled to find an opportunity to deepen our investment in Coast and continue our partnership with Daniel.”

The market has greeted Coast’s offering with enthusiasm. The company has grown its business more than fivefold in 2023, and it now serves thousands of businesses, some with just a handful of fleet cards and others with over 1,000. Surveyed customers saved an average of 9-10% on their fuel bill and 16 hours of monthly administrative work when switching to Coast from another fuel card or payment method.

Coast software controls have been so effective in reducing abuse and waste that the company recently rolled out a first-of-its-kind security guarantee, promising to cover any losses for fuel theft up to $25,000 annually for customers that enable Coast’s unique security settings.

To add to their momentum, Coast has inked partnerships with fuel brands such as 7-Eleven Fleet (including Speedway), Casey’s, RaceTrac, and EG America brands (including Cumberland Farms), as well as retailers like Discount Tire to offer larger discounts to Coast customers while driving loyalty and repeat business for these brands.

Coast also announced that it had entered into a relationship with Visa, a world leader in digital payments, to accelerate its fleet offering.

“Coast has been an innovative leader in fleet payments, and Visa is excited to collaborate further with them to create a new generation of offerings enabled by Coast’s powerful expense management software,” said SVP, North America Head of Visa Commercial Solutions Veronica Fernandez.  “With Coast’s platform and Visa’s advancement in fleet, together we can provide more security, control, visibility, and reporting to all kinds of fleet operators, for all of their vehicles, both gas and electric.”

Coast cards are issued by Celtic Bank, pursuant to a license from Visa U.S.A. Inc.

With the new funding, the Coast team will focus on product development, adding new integration partners as well as supporting businesses expenses beyond fuel. The raise will also accelerate Coast’s go-to-market capability, including the establishment of a second site in Salt Lake City.

“Coast is the financial platform for the future of transportation and the trades,” Simon said. “We are building a holistic expense management and finance platform for fleet-operating businesses. We’re now well-positioned to expand our product and get it in the hands of more fleet operators and drivers.”