Simon and I are honored to be part of Forbes’ 30 Under 30 2017 alongside many great entrepreneurs and founders.
With the rise of online shopping, shipping is now a keystone for many businesses. As services like Amazon Prime gain market-share, more consumers are expecting free, fast, and reliable shipping from all businesses they purchase from. But ecommerce businesses are struggling to keep up, finding it difficult to access, manage, and offer affordable shipping for their customers while still maintaining their margins. Today, businesses who are able to make shipping work for their operation have an advantage over their competitors.
We started Shippo to help commerce businesses succeed through shipping after experiencing difficulties with shipping for our own ecommerce store.
Shippo solves shipping challenges by providing businesses with the technology and knowledge to automate shipping. Our API and dashboard instantly connect businesses with a network of shipping providers to help them compare shipping rates, print shipping labels, track packages and more. Today, we ship millions of packages every month and service over 10,000 businesses around the world, ranging from mom-and-pop shops to enterprise platforms.
Being first-time founders, we learned a few important lessons after starting Shippo that we thought would be interesting to share:
Importance of determination
When we first raised our seed round, we pitched 125 investors and got 115 no’s. We didn’t give up, and worked on gaining traction to prove that Shippo was a service that our customers needed. We believe that determination is one of the most important characteristics for founders to have.
Startups move fast and changes happen quickly. This could come in the form of company size, organizational restructuring, and in what is expected from founders. The ability to learn fast and keep up with changes is essential. We found that having mentors, supportive board members, other founder friends, and getting coaching have helped us significantly along the way.
Founding a company is hard
No one tells you how hard it is be a founder. From the outside, everything looks like an overnight success and everyone is always crushing it. But it’s not true. Success is a rollercoaster, and it doesn’t end. We found that having people to talk to and relate to has shown us that this is normal and alright.
As proud as we are of the growth we’ve had to date as founders and for Shippo, we’re even more excited about what lies ahead.
In 2017, we will continue on building shipping technology that scales with fast-growing platforms, marketplaces, warehouses, and ecommerce businesses anywhere in the world. We will be expanding our network of shipping providers across the globe with new carriers in North America, Europe, and into Asia. We are also working to improve both our developer and merchant experience with improvements to our API documentation, the addition of new endpoints, and integrations with popular marketplaces like eBay and Amazon.
We are very excited to be at the intersection of commerce and shipping right now, helping push the entire industry ahead.
We wouldn’t be here today without the support of a number of people who helped us along the way.
First and foremost, the Shippo team – now a wonderful group of 45 people (and rapidly growing) Simon and I are thankful and privileged to be surrounded with such talented people who believe in the same dream and working towards the same goal everyday.
Our investors, especially Albert Wenger, Jeff Clavier and Andy McLoughlin, and Alex Mittal for nominating us for this award in the first place, as well as the many others including Boris Wertz, for trusting first-time founders. Thank you for your investment in funding, time, and attention. You’ve been invaluable to us.
To Shippo customers – you are why we started the company, and you are why we are here today. Thank you for trusting Shippo with your business and relying on us to help you get your products to the doorsteps of your customers. We are excited to continue our work together.
Lastly, we’d like to thank our family and friends. Thank you for being our support system and inspiration. We couldn’t have made it here without you.
Shippo is a multi-carrier API and web app that helps retailers, marketplaces and platforms connect to a global network of carriers. Businesses use Shippo to get real-time rates, print labels, automate international paperwork, track packages and facilitate returns. Shippo provides the tools to help businesses succeed through shipping.