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Episode 6: From Real Estate to Trucking? Evan Shelley’s Journey to Solving the Truck Parking Crisis

Brent – 00:00:01:

Welcome to Freight Nation, a trucking podcast where we explore the fascinating world of trucking and freight management. We dive deep into the freight industry and uncover why the trucking industry is more crucial to our country now than ever before. Stay tuned to uncover the driving forces behind successful trucking businesses and hear from the hard-working truckers and leaders who keep the world moving. Let’s hit the road. All right, Wolfgang Nation, here’s episode number six. And it’s a really, really important one. It’s about a topic and bringing in an innovator in the market, but it’s about a topic that is really, really such a pain in the butt for every truck driver out there. All 3.5 to 3.7 million of you that are out there in the commercial roads going up and down there, who go it up and down the highways, and trying to find a place to park. You think about the problem this has caused ever since, and it only got worse with ELDs because the way in which hours of service are now monitored much more closely. So truck parking is a big issue, and it’s one that my guest today has a big heartbeat for trying to solve. We bring on Freight Nation, a trucking podcast, Mr. Evan Shelley today with truckparkingclub.com. And I really appreciate him being on today to talk about this. But as with everything on Freight Nation, for me, and I hope for you as well, it’s really about the story. It’s like, what makes Evan tick? What made him do what he’s doing? What makes him really be passionate about trying to solve this problem? And then what’s it like being a startup in the marketplace that’s been just overwhelmed with new startups lately? And so we’ll talk all about that on episode six today of Freight Nation. Appreciate you joining us, and join me in welcoming in Mr. Evan Shelley, the founder of truckparkingclub.com. Evan, welcome in, man.

Evan – 00:01:44:

Yeah, thanks so much for having me. I appreciate it.

Brent – 00:01:46:

I’m glad you’re here. Look, I started in trucking in 1998, January 28th, the weekend before the Super Bowl, 1998. I’ve been around trucking my whole life, but got officially in the marketplace then. And I remember looking at all the data that was out in the market. And one of the big things was, we don’t have enough truck drivers. We don’t have enough truck drivers. And 25 years later, we still don’t have enough truck drivers. And another big problem was, we don’t have enough truck parking. There’s not enough public and private truck parking to park all the millions of trucks that are out there. And 25 years later, we still have a truck parking problem. So I’m so glad that you said, I’m gonna try to do something about that and solve that problem. So tell me, Evan, tell the watchers today, I love the backstory, man. Everybody loves the story. So first off, where’d you get into trucking? How’d you get into transportation? And then when was the day that you said, I’m gonna try to solve this problem? So tell me about when you got in, give us the whole story, and then tell us what motivated you to make a change.

Evan – 00:02:44:

Yeah, so my background is in real estate. I was out doing commercial and industrial land deals. And through doing those deals, I came across an industrial land deal that I was looking at for a warehouse, where I would go in and title it for a warehouse and then sell it to a developer who would then go and build it. And I had this property, ended up not working out for a warehouse. And I was speaking with fellow investors and trying to figure out what I was gonna do with the property. And I was like, I’m gonna go and build a warehouse. And I was like, I’m gonna go and build a warehouse. And I was like, I’m gonna go and build a warehouse. I spoke with someone and they mentioned that there was a huge demand for truck parking and that there wasn’t enough of it. And they’re like, that location looks like it’d be perfect. So I went to the municipality and they told me that they didn’t want truck parking there. They wouldn’t support it. And I was like, it’s zoned industrial. Why can’t you know, you put truck parking here and they’re like, we’re not going to support it. And so that was in 2021. And that got me thinking, what is going on here? Because if there’s a huge need for it, there isn’t enough of it. The need is getting greater every day and the municipality doesn’t want us to build it, then what’s going to happen. And then that led me down this path of talking with people in transportation, logistics and trucking and truck parking in particular, and getting to know people and trying to understand how long has it been a problem? Is it going to stay a problem? Who’s tried to solve it? What’s being done. And ultimately I thought I was just going to go buy a bunch of real estate, reap the rewards of a supply and demand imbalance, just the typical real estate guy. And from that, fortunately I actually never bought a facility and I ended up just staying in around the space for about, I guess, 12 to 18 months, trying to figure out how am I going to get this space? I don’t think it’s just buying the bunch of truck parking facilities. And ultimately through a lot of conversation ended up coming up with, well, why don’t we just leverage technology and use existing space, put it all on one platform where a trucker can go on, find and book truck parking in real time. And so that’s what we did with truck parking club, just figuring out how to leverage technology and existing space. So ultimately let’s say a hypothetical, we took all existing space that was adequate for truck parking across the US and made it available for truckers to either use or book in real time. I think a lot of the issues would be resolved. But that platform never existed. And then ultimately it was what brought us to start working on it. And then we got proof of concept very quickly and started getting customers very quickly. And then from there, we’ve just pushed to grow as quickly as possible.

Brent – 00:05:31:

You just said something that, and I’ve been around a little while with this thing and I’ve been different associations that even work with the federal government. I’ve never heard anybody say, well, I just kind of took a look at all the available parking that’s out there. And if you could get it all sort of in a collective and utilize there, wouldn’t be much of a problem at all. So tell me a little bit about that. What did you find out when you did your research on potential available areas that trucks could park on and then what kept you from kind of going down that road?

Evan – 00:05:59:

Well, to be clear, we ended up going down that road by creating our app where we add existing locations, majority of which have never been used for truck parking. So we’ll find a facility, let’s say it’s a carrier and they have 50 extra spaces in their yard. We’ll add it to our platform. No 50 extra spaces were never publicly available before. Now they are to our app. So we create 50 extra spaces just like that. If you had to depend on traditional real estate development or federal funding, those things could take years and millions of millions of dollars to accomplish. So it’s just a different way of looking at it, but you know, as far as saying it is a theoretical belief that. If you took the amount of existing space out there, that a lot of the truck parking issue would be resolved. I don’t think anyone has real statistics on if you took direct land that’s adequate for truck parking and exists today, because that would be 10 extra spaces in every carrier’s yard. That would be two spaces in this yard, 50 spaces in the back of this self-stored facility, whatever the case is, right? So it’s pretty hard to actually quantify. But I think if you do napkin math, I think you’re going to put a big dent in it. If not resolve it, but it’s a great question. Cause at least in the next thought of like, okay, just cause you have it on one platform, doesn’t mean everybody’s going to use it either, right? That’s a bad assumption to say every single trucker is going to use your app. Some people aren’t going to want to use your app. Some people, the awareness, there’s also a truck parking shortage in a lot of areas of the US but there’s also a large truck parking awareness shortage where there just isn’t enough awareness of the available space. So that’s entirely the thing that I think is super interesting that people don’t really talk about that in especially like rest stops, knowing where rest stops are easily, but not only knowing that knowing the availability. So currently, you know, a lot of times truckers depend on a road sign or talking over a CB to find out if the rest stop has availability and there’s availability feed the data that you can actually use. We pulled them into our app. I think all apps should have it to where it shows you the availability of rest stops that truckers can use, but just because you put it on our app, doesn’t mean everyone’s going to use it. So it’s almost kind of a meta thing to think about. You could have the perfect platform that solves the problem, but if you only get 20% of the user base, the other 80% are then still probably encountering the same issues, right?

Brent – 00:08:25:

That’s cool. So you brought up something as well that I didn’t know that Trucking Company would be open to. You said that either you find maybe two spaces, 10 spaces, 40 spaces at some existing carrier home lots or distribution centers or those sorts of things. So what’s some of the unique places that you guys found for parking that haven’t been used before?

Evan – 00:08:46:

Help builder. One that I can think of right off on the spot. We have a location that’s a home builder. He has some extra space in his yard.

Brent – 00:08:54:

A private yard?

Evan – 00:08:56:

Yeah, yeah, like, you know, a guy that built houses and he has the art of store all his materials and he just has extra space to park a few trucks. So I thought that was pretty interesting. We get a lot of real estate investors. We get a lot of open lots. We get your traditional truck parking operators, which is a little bit less exciting because we’re not necessarily creating more space with that because it’s already publicly available. Maybe just not as publicly available as they would like. I thought we create more awareness, but we’re not creating more parking in those scenarios.

Brent – 00:09:24:

Right. Yeah, no doubt. So that is pretty cool. I remember us doing some math one time. I was always talking about having a truck driver shortage and we did some math within our own truck spot market system. And we said it’s not really a truck problem as much as it is a truck location problem. In other words, you’ve got more trucks here and you need them over there and you’ve got more trucks down here and you need them up there. And so I would imagine you run into the same sort of systematic problem, which is that they’re not always in the same place all the time. So one of the things I love about your company is you’re a true startup. I mean, next month will be your one year anniversary, right?

Evan – 00:10:00:

Yeah.

Brent – 00:10:01:

That’s exciting, right, for you guys. I mean, you’ve been there one year and you’re continuing to gain steam. And you said that presently right now, you’re a team of eight, so you got like a real aggressive team. This is really cool with technology and most people don’t really look at how technology is developed. They don’t understand that it’s usually, it’s a very small group of very dedicated people that are trying to solve that problem and won’t give up until it’s solved. So when you were starting Truck Parking Club, tell me a little bit about what were some of the challenges with like getting it together from a team standpoint, from an idea standpoint.

Evan – 00:10:29:

Starting any company is difficult from zero to one, right? I think it was extremely hard to get started. So I created our first product that we started getting our first bookings on. And I’m not a technical guy, I just created kind of the bare minimum, what they call like a minimum viable product, just something to get out there and get bookings. And it worked and we started getting bookings on it. I was like, okay, I think there’s something here. And from there started pushing forward. And it was just very, very difficult to get the first booking and then get the fifth booking, the 10th booking, the 100th booking. It was extremely difficult. I mean, you’re battling a marketplaces, you gotta have parking where a truck needs it. And let’s say you connect a truck parking location with one truck with one location where they need it. They don’t need it always probably, right? Let’s say that’s your first booking, now you have to get your second booking, which now you have to connect a different truck. To a different location in theory. And like, if you don’t have enough locations, then someone uses your app once and they never use you again. They forget about you. So it’s extremely, I mean, in the beginning, it’s just like extremely difficult and then your product isn’t working perfectly, so you’re probably losing customers.

Brent – 00:11:44:

I mean, I thought it was perfect. It always works just so well.

Evan – 00:11:49:

It’s unbelievable. But sometimes there are these things called bugs that show up and they never stop FYI for the people out there, but dealing with an inadequate product that I decided to take to market early. And that was probably the best thing I ever did is just take it to market and iterate, iterate, iterate on what the customer wants. And so went from one to 10 to a hundred bookings to a thousand bookings. And through those lessons, you know, created a product out of it, created a team out of it, created the right teams, because there isn’t really a playbook for what we’re doing. There’s been a few other companies that have tried, ended up going different verticals and things of that nature. And for us, what we were really focused on is we went down market. So we wanted a product that any owner operator, if they got it in their hands, they could use it and book through the app without having to call someone, get assistance, broker a deal, broker parking. We wanted none of that. We wanted a self-service platform. And we went down market where if we can get a guy with one truck or five trucks or 10 trucks or 50 trucks, we thought if we could get a product for them, then the rest. Going up market would take care of itself. And that’s actually proven true. So we really focused on because we believe we provide the most value to the owner operators, even up to the smaller carriers. We think that’s where we provide a lot of value to the guys that may not have as many options as a driver at a larger carrier would have. So we were really focused on that and we actually even hired around that. So like our customer service team is made up of former truckers. Our first hiring customer service was a 30 year former driver and she’s been amazing, grown out that entire side of the company. We now have three people in customer service and growing that out and creating our own SOPs and our own processes because there isn’t necessarily a playbook and we didn’t want to outsource it because we know we have a unique customer, we know we have a unique customer and we want to serve any driver that calls in, we want that driver to feel comfortable that the person that they’re talking to understands what’s going on. And so we framed the company around that. And so we went down market and we now have a product that we believe any driver get it in their hands and they can use it and now for us, it is continuing to provide value to them while continuing to add more properties and have more happy customers and continue to go up market. And now we have very large carriers using us as well.

Brent – 00:14:18:

Yeah, fantastic. It’s funny, you know, you talk about technology and most people don’t realize how difficult it is. They think you code a little something, you know, you get to hire a couple developers and you get it done and they don’t realize it’s just like any other product that you build. You have to continuously improve on it all the time.

Evan – 00:14:38:

Absolutely.

Brent – 00:14:38:

That’s exciting. So I think it’s fascinating, Evan, that you didn’t come from the industry that you literally happened on. You said, oh, well, that’s a problem that needs to be solved. What’s funny is Scott Moscrip, who started TruckStop, same thing. He was a physicist. He’s a computer developer, physicist guy that saw an empty truck in a field when he was driving a car that his dad bought in California back home to Idaho. He looked out in this field and he sees this empty drive-in trailer and it says, 1-800-LOADS-TO-ANYWHERE. It didn’t say a company name or something. Scott’s a mathematician physicist. He goes, well, there’s gotta be a better way than that. I mean, like I just seen something that he goes, so you literally wrote down the idea on every piece of paper you could for the next 500 miles in July of 1995, that’s when truck stops started. So same sort of thing, just saw a need to solve a problem. And then realized if you can create a marketplace, a supply and demand marketplace, where you’ve got the two quantities working together, and you just build momentum into it, it can scale up. And so obviously there’s a lot of trucks that need parking.

Evan – 00:15:45:

Every day.

Brent – 00:15:47:

Every day, what’s the HOS? Every 11 hours, you know, they got a parking lot where a lot of the major truck stops do a good job and they have nice truck parking, but that only covers a very small portion of the trucks that need to park. So I think it’s super fascinating that you grew up in Kentucky in a small town in Kentucky. Now I will give you a little challenge here. Okay. All right. How many people were in your small town that you grew up in?

Evan – 00:16:11:

3,000.

Brent – 00:16:12:

Oh man, you had double the town that Scott Moskow grew up in. Scott grew up in New Plymouth, Idaho, population 1400. So a little agriculture town in Idaho, man. So same thing. So tell me a little bit about those small towns you grew up in and you ended up getting in the real estate world, but you grew up in Kentucky. Give me a couple seconds on what was it like growing up a little small town in Kentucky?

Evan – 00:16:35:

I think it was a great place to grow up. You learned a lot of values that you wouldn’t learn in maybe a large metro or suburb where our closest Walmart was 30 minutes away. Our closest movie theater was an hour away. You’re outside a lot. You’re doing stuff outside. You’re not constantly being entertained in ways that maybe in a larger town you could be. We were having fun just running, playing in creeks and stuff like that. And I think that creates interesting values that maybe some other backgrounds might not get. And not to say one is right and the other is wrong. I feel fortunate to have grown up in a small town like that. Like I mentioned, I mean, just the values that come out of that. I feel very grateful to have. I went to school at University of Kentucky and ended up moving to Florida soon thereafter and ended up in big cities. But I always felt that I had a different perspective on things. When I spoke to people that were from those big cities that I ended up enjoying very much, it’s just, it’s an interesting difference in perspectives sometimes.

Brent – 00:17:38:

Yeah, well, I definitely know what not being entertained all the time and what it does to people’s creativity. It really enhances it. So not surprised that you came up as a problem solver, which, you know, if you’re out there always outside doing stuff, you know, that creates a super creative brain. That’s really cool. So one of the things too, I think that you have in common with our founder as well is that truck driving was not part of your past. I don’t think Scott’s ever driven a truck. I’ve driven a truck a couple times, but not like commercially. And I know why a truck driver feels like they’re the king of the road. You said to me just earlier that you’ve never driven a truck either, and you don’t have to to do what you’re doing. This problem you’re solving doesn’t require that you drive a truck. What’s just interesting how people’s backgrounds, most of the time people think trucking begets trucking with us always the way.

Evan – 00:18:20:

Yeah, I think that’s super interesting that you bring that up. And I would say you need to understand their perspective of a driver. And I think for us, we figured that out through hiring and hired that way to create a culture that is trucker centric and is thinking about the a lot of the calls we’re on, a lot of the communication that’s being had amongst the company, there’s a trucker involved in that conversation. And they’re putting in their perspective. And a lot of times it is the perspective that we should be going with most of the time, actually, majority of the time. So I think you do have to have part of that. I think I’ve seen companies kind of separate from the problem and then they kind of theorize on what the solution is. And I don’t know if that works.

Brent – 00:19:01:

Yeah, I would agree with you that that’s going to be the long way to solve the problem because trucking is its own closed culture. It’s its own closed experience. And I mean, most people are not out driving a truck on the highway 14 to 20 days a month. They’re not away from their family and their friends and their life like that. Now they choose this. I realize that, but it is its own problem to solve. And if you don’t understand what’s important to the truck driver, the truck owner, then you’re just never going to solve the problem well enough for them. You’ll solve a little bit of it, but you won’t hit a home run for them. And obviously you’re continuing to help solve this problem. So tell me a little bit about the app itself. And look, we’re not here for commercials, but what makes it different? Because this goes back to your creative mind and what makes it different? What makes it solve the problem that it needs to solve?

Evan – 00:19:51:

Yeah. So I think we just thought about what does the trucker needs and they need to be able to find parking efficiently. They need to be able to have a product where they can book it efficiently. They need to have a customer experience where they don’t get frustrated with finding parking. This needs to be the fastest and easiest part of their day. And so we designed the product around that perspective of as few clicks as possible, find the property as quickly as possible, get the booking done as quickly as possible, deliver all the information needed, that all the information that the trucker needs to get parked, bar none. That’s what they need. No more questions, no more issues. Obviously that’s what we were shooting for as we create the product. And then the question is, well, what if they do have an issue? Well, we have a 24 seven customer service line made up of former truckers. So then they call in and the experience that they’re having with the company, hopefully we’re resolving their issues and the customer experience is remaining positive. And the trucker is still getting parked. And that is really it. That’s how we think about it. I’m not going to sit here and talk to you about AI or dynamic pricing or machine learning or any of that. You won’t hear me talk about tech a lot, but I think we’re a very strong tech company. But at the end of the day, the big thing we care about is customer experience and how simple is it for the trucker to use? I mean, I hate to think about it like this, but I hope the biggest part of our customer, which we call our members, our trucker members and our property members, you know, not the biggest part of their day is using our app. I hope that that is the fastest and most efficient part of their day. I’m going to hop on this app. I’m going to find the parking I need. I’m going to book it in advance. I know I’m going to get parked. And if I have a problem, I know I can call this number done. And on average for a first truckers booking, it takes three to five minutes. And for every booking thereafter, it takes about 30 seconds to get through the booking process. We make it very, very simple. That’s what we care about. And there’s been a lot of technology that we’ve had to implement through that. And there’s been a lot of product design that we’ve had to implement through that. But at the end of the day, we’re very trucker centric and we’ve created a product that we hope that they enjoy using and can use it quickly, efficiently and move on with their day.

Brent – 00:22:03:

Yeah, no doubt. So there’s roughly 3.5 to 3.7 million commercial trucks in the United States, somewhere in that realm. It’s not a tight number, if you know what I’m saying. So what’s the available parking in the United States now? Just roughly, what percentage of trucks can find a place to park each night? Does anybody have that number? Maybe I’m asking the question that can’t be, I’m not trying to set you up. I apologize, but I was just wondering that as an expert, is there, do you have any modeling around that?

Evan – 00:22:30:

Yeah. So the number that started out as 300,000, that there is 300,000 spaces available for truckers to park at.

Brent – 00:22:37:

So less than 10% of the trucks, but now they don’t all need to park every night. That’s not the case.

Evan – 00:22:41:

Yeah. Yeah. So that’s what I was going to elaborate on is you’ve got small carrier owner ops. I believe the number comes to like outside of dedicated route contracts. Whatever suppliers that are running their own trucks. If you take that away, the number that I’ve heard is like 1.7 million trucks that are probably going to be out there looking for parking, maybe not even on a daily basis because they may have other options, but very often. And then from that, you could actually start thinking about, okay, now what’s the constraint on a daily basis? And the number that’s turned around on a daily basis for the need that is not there is about 600,000 faces, which is a very large number. I want to tie that into something you said earlier that I thought was such a good point that people do not talk about is that trucks move and they get more dense in certain areas of the US at certain times. So the need for truck parking is different at all times. And maybe there is an issue in Dallas today that may not be an issue again for two weeks, and then maybe it becomes an issue again. Right. Because ultimately in a perfect world, you have enough truck parking in every region, every major Metro that will be enough capacity for those instances where you have a ton of volume coming in and out of that major Metro in a perfect world. You’re going to have capacity, enough truck parking capacity to take care of all those trucks and trailers. Right. So that’s actually the amount of parking you need in every major Metro for truckers to never have an issue. So you actually need too much parking, which is kind of crazy to think about because there are certain times when we’re not going to have an issue in Dallas, but then there are times when we are going to have an issue. And it’s super interesting where like, if you have a hundred percent capacity and you’ve hit that upper bound of whatever that is, I’m just using Dallas to think that way could be wherever, but you may only get to 80% the next day, 70% the next day, then you get to 105% the next day for truck parking need. So in theory, you actually need to build for the upper bound needs of every single major Metro to then actually resolve the truck parking issue, which is kind of what you alluded to with like, with needs in terms of trucking on different parts of the, you were mentioning the spot market, I believe. And I don’t think truck parking is all that I think you have to consider that when thinking about how much truck parking we actually need, because it fluctuates pretty drastically, I believe. Well, we’re starting to get data enough. We have enough bookings where we can see the data and there are points and times where the Northeast is going crazy. And then it gets very quiet. And you’re like, this is wild. And you like think there’s something wrong, but then a week later it blows up again, and you’re just like, this is cool to see it happen, you know, and there’s certain areas that you have to get really quiet at certain times when you’re just like, this is wild. I’ll get paranoid. I’ll be like, is there an issue with our tech or something going on? And then it’s just like a light switch flips on and then we start getting demand there again, and then it cools off after a certain period of time. So it’s pretty wild.

Brent – 00:26:09:

Yeah. We implicitly look at thousands of several thousand lanes every single day on what’s the volume in just those lanes. And then we track hundreds of thousands of lanes for the, we call the market demand within that market. We call them low densities within that lane. So we do the same thing in looking at that. So that’s very interesting data on that to know what the need is. You said, you feel like maybe at its core, there’s about 600,000 trucks that need to park from a four higher standard going up and down the highways. And there’s roughly about 300,000 spaces available. So sounds like there’s an opportunity for more people to build more places and offer more things. So what’s part of that solution? You’ve been able to really look at this for a year and you’ve come at it from an outside perspective, which is probably really good, right? You know, you’re trying to solve it with a different mindset. Now, I know that in the last surface transportation bill, they cut out some money, but then they put some money back in or they founded some other places for parking. I’m not going to say like, I like our government. I appreciate our government highly on how they help us, but I’m really not going to sit around and wait on our government to build things for private enterprise where private enterprise probably should just be doing this themselves. So where are some of the solutions? Where do they need to happen? You got a marketplace app that can provide inventory availability and visibility into it. You still have a shortage of inventory. So what needs to happen in the Professor Shelley’s mind? What needs to happen there for this problem to start being

Evan – 00:27:40:

overcome? The first thing is the 750 million, I hope that gets passed. It needs to get passed. You know, the 750 million is gonna build tens of thousands of spaces, which is probably ultimately gonna be ten percent or less of the actual need. So we need it bad. Hopefully it gets done. We’re gonna be fine either way as far as Truck Parking Club. I think it needs to get done. And then on top of that, the next leg is you need to build more of it, which there’s a few companies out there doing that, and that’s great. I think what people are learning, me having a real estate background, is development is messy, development is expensive, development is very timely, especially in these certain metros. It can take years and years to build a truck parking lot. And then on top of that, I think you have the next leg, which is companies like ours, where we need more awareness of truck parking, where just because you build it doesn’t mean every trucker knows it’s there. If there’s a hundred spaces a mile away from you, but the only way you can find it is on the third page in Google, I mean, is it really there?

Brent – 00:28:55:

Hasn’t the visibility into this and then accessibility into it, that’s been the big problem, right? That’s the problem. It’s like a trucker doesn’t know if there’s a space when their hours of service is going to run out in three hours. They don’t know what the spaces are relatively three hours down the road. But with your app, you’re solving a lot of this problem.

Evan – 00:29:14:

Yeah, I think there’s an awareness issue of knowing what is even down the road from you, around you, with any reliability at all. On top of that, we truly think there’s something to leveraging existing space and taking existing space. So the majority of our locations are like that and we can add a hundred spaces in a day. That’s millions of dollars in development costs otherwise. And we can do it instantly rather than traditional development. So I think that side of it and being in a position where we have a product that we’ve iterated to where it can function and run automated. And ultimately what we’re doing is we’re bringing landowners and business owners into the truck parking business because we’ve automated the business for them, where a lot of these business owners like carriers, they don’t have time to mess with truck parking, parking other people’s trucks. Right. And we actually have to educate our customers on the fact that we’re not going to take time away from you. We’re going to let truckers book parking through our app and park at your location. And we’ve automated the entire thing. And fortunately we had the early adopters and we delivered for them. And now we have the momentum of now we can say when we have a skeptical business owner, let’s say a carrier or something, they’re like, no, I don’t want to mess with it. I’m like, you don’t have to actually, we can prove this. We have 160 or so properties today. And we have. Dozens of properties that are just like yours that we’ve automated and put them in the truck parking business, they make some revenue and these truckers find parking when they need it and get them off the on ramps, off ramps, etc. Shoulders of the road. So between those four pillars, I think all those things need to be implemented. And I think there’s good momentum in each of those categories for creating some significant change and improvements.

Brent – 00:31:08:

Right. You talk about parking on on ramps and off ramps. So I live in Tuscaloosa, AL, Alabama, and I drive the airport in Birmingham quite a bit. And in between my home and the Birmingham airport, there are six truck stops. So I am always gauging the industry on how many trucks are parked on the on ramps and off ramps going from here to the airport. I can feel the pressure in the industry by that. But that’s obviously a giant problem. And because it’s not the safest place for the trucker to be parked, it’s not the most convenient place. There’s all kinds of challenges that go into it. Sometimes it’s against the law to do that. But when hours of service are going to run out, what do you do? All right. So you’ve solved this problem. You’re going to be gaining scale and gaining things in the marketplace. Is there another problem you’re looking at solving?

Evan – 00:31:59:

Let’s back up a little. I don’t think we’ve solved this problem. We’re beginning to solve. I was talking with someone I believe earlier today or yesterday and as it sits right now for us with what we do today, we’re the largest network of instantly reservable truck parking in the U.S. Where you actually have a self-service app that you can go on and book and with no human interference you can go on and book it and we have thousands and thousands of bookings to prove it. We’re not just out here talking about it. We’re doing it and with all that being said, I think we’re maybe only 1% of the way there. I think we’re at the very beginning of this journey and we’re fortunate to have thousands of happy customers, thousands of loyal customers that fortunate to be able to speak with every day and talk with them and get feedback, but we’re at the very beginning of 167 locations. Our goal is to push up toward 10,000 and we think we can do that and that’s the goal. So we believe we have a lot of work to do to make a significant impact and so I’d love to start thinking about other problems, but I am very, very focused on this one. Again, you sound just like

Brent – 00:33:02:

our founder Scott Moskol. People would go, Scott, what are you going to do next? You’ve done so well. He’d go, we’ve only got this much of the market so far. There’s a whole lot more. He goes, I’m going to stay in the market that I’m in. So that’s good to hear you’re staying focused, man. That’s as smart as it gets. Well, Evan, you’ve been great, man. Thank you for solving the problem out there for truckers. Thanks for having a heart for it. I can see why you’re successful. You’re a genuine guy who wants to solve a genuine problem in genuine ways and that’s rare. So really appreciate you being on Freight Nation today to talk about solving one of the biggest two problems in the market. If you could just get detention solved, we’d appreciate that too. Maybe that’s the next thing on Mr. Shelley’s list, but certainly those two things, parking and detention, the two biggest inefficient things in the market that are left that aren’t being dealt with, but you’re dealing with it and so that’s fantastic. So really appreciate you being on today and talking about your story, talking about how you look at things and bringing your honesty and sincerity to it. Really appreciate you talking to Freight Nation today and really appreciate you being on and we wish you the best. Really appreciate

Evan – 00:34:06:

you being here. Yeah, thanks so much for having me. I really enjoyed this. Oh man, appreciate it.

Brent – 00:34:10:

And as we’re beginning to end the Freight Nation podcast each time, don’t forget to work hard, be kind and stay humble. We’ll see you next time on Freight Nation. On behalf of the TruckStop team, thanks for listening to this episode of Freight Nation. To find out more about the show, head to truckstop.com/podcast. If you enjoyed this episode, make sure you hit subscribe so you don’t miss any future episodes until then keep on trucking and exploring the open roads with Freight Nation, a trucking podcast.

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