Passel passes on the parcels to shoppers

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Empire building: Marshall Hughes is aiming to build his Passel business into a force to be reckoned with in the online shopping space. Picture: Gary Sissons

EVERYONE wants everything now in today’s fast-paced world and that’s a modern trend new business founder Marshall Hughes hopes will see success arrive by bypassing the post.

Hughes is one of several business entrepreneurs hoping to strike it big by starting in Frankston and building an enterprise to compete with big business.

The 44-year-old founder of Passel, “a same-day delivery solution” for retailers and shoppers, is poised to roll out the first stage of a metropolitan Melbourne wide launch of a way that shoppers can receive items they buy online “within three hours”.

Based at the co-working space at the Frankston Foundry, the fledgling Passel is aiming to get retailers at shopping centres onboard and offer a “click and same-day delivery” option on retailer websites.

People registered with Passel who are shopping at the shopping centre at the time the online order is placed will have the option to pick up the goods and drop it off to buyers in their neighbourhood “on the way home”.

“Passel is a same-day delivery solution for online retailers that uses regular people in shopping centres to do the deliveries on their way home.”

Hughes is a 20-year veteran of the freights and logistics industry who “has lived most of my life around Frankston” and is a self-described “patient zero” at the Frankston Foundry when bringing his business to market.

“I’ve got four kids at home and no study so I can’t really work from home. I’d either get too distracted or bored on my own.”

He says retailers have not found “a delightful solution” to delivering goods to customers with most charging “between $10-$15” for postal delivery “within five days”.

People who register with Passel will be paid $10 per delivery in the form of a gift voucher.

“We’ll have thousands of people in shopping centres. Passel is all about convenience. We want the retailers to sell more, the delivery members to get paid their ten bucks and the person doing the shopping having their delivery turn up within three hours with their neighbour doing the delivery.”

Shopping order details will be sent to deliverers mobile phones without the need for an app to be downloaded by buyers or Passel deliverers who will be tracked by GPS within phones.

Three-hour delivery will be an option on the retailer’s website so there is no need for buyers to change their behaviour.

“There’s too many apps. People don’t want to download them. It’s too much effort,” he said.

“The people at home won’t have to do anything different. All they want is to be able to shop and get what they’ve bought quickly.”

Hughes admits his business will compete in the same industry space as Australia Post and courier services but he says Passel is a different proposition for consumer rather than business to business deliveries in an ever-growing market thanks to online shopping.

“Australia Post sometimes do 2 million deliveries a day and don’t do same-day deliveries.

“My target is 300,000 a year at first.”

The imminent arrival of global online retailer Amazon on Australian soil with its own warehouses does not faze the entrepreneur.

“Amazon is a potential customer, they’re not a competitor.”

  • The Frankston Foundry co-working space will be offering a “Try July” offer for business people interested in co-working space next month. See frankstonfoundry.com for details.

First published in the Frankston Times – 26 June 2017

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