As we celebrate Black voices in trucking, Pierre Laguerre shares a remarkable story of resilience, determination, and passion for teaching fellow drivers the importance of entrepreneurship. Introduced to us by Sharae Moore, founder of S.H.E. Trucking, Laguerre gave us a look under the hood into how he got his start on the road, leading up to a successful 17-year career.
Hailing from Haiti, Laguerre immigrated to the United States at the young age of 15. He landed in a Brooklyn community plagued by drugs and violence, often questioning whether he would “graduate alive”. The fear of becoming a statistic and product of his environment propelled him to look for an escape. That escape was trucking.
After his first job at XPO Logistics, Laguerre’s career took an entrepreneurial turn when he purchased his own truck and became an owner-operator. It was his owner-operator experience that directly exposed him to the pain points that drivers face across the industry. Determined to provide solutions to these critical issues, Laguerre launched Fleeting, a mobile staffing agency platform that maximizes opportunities in trucking by providing access to great paying jobs while creating a clear path to upward mobility and career progression — all without needing a truck to get started.
Fleeting focuses on recruiting for local jobs, solving for the lack of time drivers spend with their families – a problem Laguerre feels significantly contributes to the driver shortage.
“Drivers are seeing that people are enjoying a better life with their families,” says Laguerre, “Imagine that driver in a truck stop somewhere in the mountains, with no service and he’s not seeing his family.” Being a driver himself, Laguerre felt a
moral obligation to use technology to reduce the average of 250+ nights spent on the road, providing a better (and happier) life for truck drivers — the model has proven much success.
Through Fleeting, Laugerre also teaches and supports drivers in business acumen, investment opportunities, and entrepreneurship. In particular, Laguerre believes that embracing technology will prime drivers’ careers for the long haul – even when it comes to autonomous trucking. Albeit, a taboo topic in the industry, he imagines AV will actually create more jobs through the “platooning model”. Platooning is a concept where a leading truck would be driven with a human behind the wheel with several autonomous vehicles following to one midpoint. The driverless trucks would then disperse into several local jobs run by actual drivers. “The benefit that I see for autonomous trucking is that it can minimize the amount of days a driver has to spend on the road. The drivers can stay stationary and run local jobs.”
To date, Fleeting has raised $2.5 million in funding and Laguerre holds the prestigious title of becoming the first Black man to raise over $1 million, last year, on a crowdfunding platform regulated by the FCC.
It’s Laguerre’spositive attitude that has contributed to his remarkable success. Laguerre believes “you can fail at something but it doesn’t mean you’re a failure”. He leaves us with this bit of advice for new and current drivers today:
You can follow the success of Pierre Laguerre on Twitter and Instagram: @Pierre_laguerre5. You can also find him on LinkedIn.