Born in the Netherlands, PakketMail is changing the way webshops ship their products. This Summer they just shipped themselves to Portugal.
For Mark, co-founder of PakketMail, the fact that it was so easy to move says a lot about how comfortable a foreign person feels in Portugal:
There are not a lot of boundaries as a European citizen. From one day to the other you can pack a bag and move to another country. There is no language barrier, it’s easy to get accommodation, if you already know a couple of people, it is really easy to get the basics fixed, so you don’t need months and months of preparation.
Having a problem, finding a solution
While running a webshop back in 2013, Mark was experiencing difficulties in the shipping process, like many other relatively small companies with low shipping volume. The prices he was facing for logistics were high, and he didn’t have negotiation power to change shipping rates. Finding how to ship and which carrier would provide support to his customers in case of the package getting lost, were time consuming. That was the trigger for Mark and Jorn to start PakketMail, a startup dedicated to optimizing that flow and offer small and medium size webshops a solution to ship faster, cheaper and hassle-free.
After conquering the Netherlands, Portugal was on the map
Last year, PakketMail was already offering a wide variety of different carrier contracts to its customers in the Netherlands. The founders looked then for a less mature e-commerce market in order to test assumptions, and Portugal filled the requirement. They applied for Lisbon Challenge, where their main goal was met within a month: webshops in Portugal were having the same issues.
The decision of moving the headquarters to Portugal was quite fast – between a month and six weeks within Lisbon Challenge, the team had already decided that staying in Lisbon was a good choice. But why this country? Jorn was straightforward, pointing out the 5 main reasons to move:
- Access to talent;
- Costs of living;
- Clearly work-fun balance;
- Level of English;
- Government support
Riding from the Netherlands to Portugal with flip flops
Even though moving the headquarters to Portugal was easy, PakketMail still had to run the business in the Netherlands. The team decided that Mark would move first to Portugal and Jorn would join later on. They picked a date on the calendar; Mark packed a small weekend bag, threw away the rest of his stuff, including his shoes (which were “way too off for Portugal”), and drove his small car with Portugal as the final destination.
What is the worst it can get? I get my car and ride back.
PakketMail – ship faster, cheaper and hassle-free
PakketMail is based on 3 pillars: cost saving, optimizing IT and providing customers support on logistic related matters.
They negotiate sharp shipping rates thanks to the volume they bundle and have more leverage in negotiating. One shipping engine connects to all different carriers, but the webshop only integrates PakketMail shipping engine once – with one plugin they can use all these different types of carriers without having to ship through different shipping engines and without having to receive different invoices per month. And then, when something goes wrong, PakketMail takes care of all this administrative hassle.
The official launch of PakketMail in Portugal will happen on September 1st, followed by Spain, a month after. It is time now to offer the solution and connect more countries.