405 Cherry Street, Chattanooga, TN 37402
FreightWaves is a price reporting agency (PRA) focused on the global freight market and the leading provider of high-frequency data for the global supply chain. FreightWaves’ price, demand, and capacity data allow customers to benchmark, analyze, monitor, and forecast the global physical economy.
As the leading provider of global supply chain intelligence, our mission is to bring transparency to all parts of the supply chain so that transparency and intelligence lead to better decision-making and performance.
SONAR is the industry’s most comprehensive freight forecasting and analytics platform, providing high-frequency supply chain market intelligence and visibility into the freight marketplace—at local, state, national, and global levels.
FreightWaves SONAR is the world’s first high-frequency market intelligence platform, offering a technical analysis dashboard and API suite that empowers clients with access to freight market developments, often weeks or months before competitors.
The creation of SONAR was the brainchild of Craig Fuller, the founder of FreightWaves and the product execution of Ben Murphy, the company’s first executive and long-time friend of Fuller. The idea was to create a platform that mimicked Wall Street market dashboards that are commonly used by day traders, but focused specifically on freight movement and supply chain information.
Fuller and Murphy examined dozens of technical trading platforms, ranging from Power E-Trade to Bloomberg, and envisioned providing a comprehensive view of the global freight markets, with tools that would provide deep analysis for clients.
Fuller, a voracious reader, considered the themes behind two of Michael Lewis’ books – “Moneyball” and “Flash Boys” – as inspiration behind SONAR’s data. The key from “Flash Boys” was that stock market participants with the most up-to-date information always had the edge on competitors, and in “Moneyball,” the key was that statistical information would create a far superior outcome in decision-making. That led Fuller to reason that the digital revolution taking place around supply chains would enable the freight markets to eventually behave like the financial markets.
He also drew inspiration from Michael Bloomberg’s autobiography, “Bloomberg by Bloomberg,” and imagined that SONAR could become the “Bloomberg terminal” of the physical goods economy.
Fuller and Murphy also understood how freight market pricing moves due to on supply and demand. They co-developed a core principle behind SONAR’s first set of indices, which provided real-time market signals on the status of supply and demand, known as The Waterfall Theory of Freight.
While the Waterfall Theory of Freight was understood conceptually by experienced supply chain professionals, no one had developed a set of signals that could track waterfall compliance in real-time and provide data and intelligence that someone could act on. But Murphy understood how to build these signals and set out to create them, known as the Tender indices.
After six months of development, SONAR was launched in May 2018 at FreightWaves’ first industry conference, Transparency18. Features and data were limited almost exclusively to tender data, but because the theory proved to accurately predict spot pricing, customers found the data to offer a “Flash Boys’” level of speed, with a “Moneyball” level of analysis regarding the freight market.
Today, SONAR is the world’s leading provider of high-frequency market intelligence. Sadly, Ben Murphy passed away in January 2019, but Fuller is proud of the work he and Murphy did.
Chattanooga, Tennessee, also known as “Freight Alley,” is a prime location for companies in the freight industry. The low cost of living, beautiful outdoors, and flourishing food scene attracts employers and employees from all over the country. Because transportation and logistics are in our DNA. This is where FreightWaves and other companies call this place home.