I thought it a good time to do a “story so far” so…

Lesson 1 – there is no substitute for national prime time news coverage – http://bit.ly/Passel_Channel7_News.

Lesson 2 – the most frequent response to my pitch is “so, you are the Uber for couriers”, so I wrote this – https://www.passel.com.au/2018/04/04/why-passel-is-not-the-uber-for-couriers/

Lesson 3 – a startup is like real estate. The thing that matters most is traction, traction and traction.

Customer Traction

We have started, signed and committed:



Signed and being onboarded:

The Party People
Storm in a D Cup
Evergreen Clothing

Flowing into this pipeline is a funnel of hundreds of large and small retailers, all of whom have committed but not signed, have said “prove it at scale first”, or “we can’t ship from store, yet”.

There are a number of hot prospects, plus opportunities through our channel partner Frontline Stores.


Passer Traction

2200 Activated Passers (registered delivery members) across Australia

This means they have downloaded the app (from google or ios), have signed up and then completed a short survey. Our process has too much friction, and we lose 17% of people who sign up but don’t register. We’re working on that.


Delivery Traction

We have completed over 50 deliveries an on-time rate of 98% and an average time from booking to delivery of 2 hours and 7 minutes. We have learned a tonne about timing, messaging and communication. Both Purebaby and Pookipoiga have stayed with us into production, and Purebaby will soon launch their ship from store platform which will increase volumes substantially.

Through beta and now in production we have conclusively proven we can deliver with regular people who are not in the gig economy. The model will scale.


Tech Traction

Simultaneously launched the App in Google and iOS. We are collecting 250k pieces of location data for every 1000 Passers each day.

The booking, communication and tracking all works.

The biggest challenge we face with tech is that integrating with the shopping carts is laborious if we can’t outsource this work to specialists. It’s a linear process with Julian doing all the heavy lifting, while simultaneously onboarding new customers and managing the tech side of the operation.


Advisor Traction

  • Barry Nguyen – startups, scale, focus on the big pict<bure
  • Cameron Rambert – marketing
  • Adrian Stone – startups, questions, focus – what do investors look for?
  • Gavan Stewart – keeping my feet planted, business focus, listening to customers
  • Founder Institute – “Founder Select” program for top 2% of grads


Investment Traction

  • Gavan Stewart. Former owner of Vic Express (sold to Toll). Current COO of ActivePipe
  • Ben Bruscella and Shikand Satheesh – software engineers
  • Dinh Nguyen – principal at CircuIT Recruitment
  • John Hong, Joel Turriff, Mitchell Banbury – owners, Adept Project Management (retail shopfitters)
  • Jonathan Lagman – logistics


Volunteer Traction

Too many to count, but to name a few

  • Bec Campbell – studying arts, commerce and communication at Melbourne Uni. Helping out with social and community engagement.
  • Ben and Rey – app dev
  • Amanda Serra – marketing, Passer avatar creation


Co-Founder Traction

Julian Kelabora, who has an extensive software engineering background, including work with Myfreight, where we met. As well as Auspost, Hooroo, and a number of other projects. He’s a graduate of MAP, has worked at other startups and recently was at Progress Claim.

Thanks for all your help and support so far. We’re on the cusp of going nuts and we are just getting started.

And, of course, if you know a potential investor who gets excited about traction, feel free to forward them this blog post or put them in touch with me.


Marshall Hughes
One of the guys from Passel

PS – Don’t have the App yet? You can download it now from Google or the App Store.