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September 25, 2016 | Tom Ballard

Dynamo Team #1: Shipamax

Dynamo(EDITOR’S NOTE: This is the first in a series of articles profiling the teams participating in the Lamp Post Group’s inaugural Dynamo logistics accelerator. We asked each team to respond to a series of questions. The 10 teams will pitch their ideas at 10 a.m. October 4 during a “Demo Day” set for the Tivoli Theater, 709 Broad Street, Chattanooga. For more details, click here.)

Today’s profile is about Shipamax, a London-based start-up that describes itself as “a tech-driven ship brokerage that puts you in control of chartering dry-bulk ships.”

Tell us about your team . . . names(s), background(s), experience, etc.

  • Jenna Brown: Started career in commodities trading before joining the start-up world. She was the second business employee at a search engine for jobs (backed by Passion Capital, Index and The Accelerator Group) where she tripled sales in seven months to millions in revenue and expanded into 11 markets. She most recently led the international expansion of the FinTech start-up GoCardless (backed by YCombinator, Passion Capital, Balderton, Accel and Notion Capital).
  • Fabian Blaicher: Worked in the commodities industry for four and one-half years. Two years ago, he built a new fertilizer trading business from scratch (Paper and Physical). Fabian has a solid computer science background, having studied at top institutions such as Karlsruhe (Germany), Nanyang (Singapore) and Carnegie Mellon (USA).

Describe the focus of your start-up and the logistics problem you are trying to address. Shipamax is a tech-driven ship brokerage (bulk freight, not containers). We help mining, agriculture and energy companies find the optimal ship, faster.

How did the idea to start the company originate? What was the catalyst? Fabian used to ship piles of fertilizer around to world in big bulk ships. The process was manual, tedious and expensive.

What was the impetus for applying to participate in Dynamo? We wanted to connect with like-minded investors and customers – people who understand both technology and the logistics space.

What has been the greatest value the program has provided thus far? Working with other teams who are at similar points in their journey to hear how they’ve dealt with some of the things we’re dealing with. Also having that experience/advice from the Access America guys (Ted, Alan, Barry) since they’ve been through the full journey. Finally, the introductions to other businesses have been invaluable.

What do you expect to accomplish by Demo Day and what happens after October 4? Wait and see.

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