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Temando CEO says the Talent Unleashed Awards provide Australian entrepreneurs with important recognition

For shipping and fulfilment company Temando, connecting with Richard Branson was really the cherry on top when it won a Talent Unleashed Award in 2015. The Sydney-based startup took out the Best Tech IPO category last year after closing a $50 million round and says that being part of the awards helped it build good, longstanding relationships with its peers.

Temando’s software aggregates courier services to help both consumers and retailers compare their shipping options. CEO Carl Hartmann says expensive and complicated postage arrangements is the number 1 reason consumers don’t complete a sale and the figure for abandonment stands at between 60-80% depending on the industry.

Hartmann’s startup was founded on the premise that retailers should be able to offer a variety of different shipping experiences to help improve a customer’s experience. Temando’s technology automates the processes and decisions for a business so it can work out the cheapest, fastest way to deliver a product.. The result is a boost in sales and a more efficient and transparent way of moving products from cart to customer.

“If they’re doing free shipping, it might be about price,” said Hartmann, “but if they’ve made a promise to get a product somewhere by a certain time, they need to make sure they’re booking it on the right service.” Bulky or fragile items may also need to be transported using a specific courier service and because all these choices tend to made manually, Temando value proposition is in automating and increasing the speed of these decisions.

The idea first came to Hartmann around 16 years ago, when he was working at JBHIFI. Customers would ask about shipping costs and request a product be delivered on a certain day, and store staff weren’t able to predict shipping costs accurately at the point of sale nor be able to guarantee a specific delivery time.

The Temando CEO went looking for a solution and when he couldn’t find one, he and his co-founders decided to design the technology. It’s now taken on an important role in making courier services accessible, especially on e-commerce platforms. The technology is currently present in all major Western markets and looks to expand its relationships with big tech and e-commerce platforms to enhance the merchant experience across multiple countries.

On the other hand, it’s getting more difficult and more expensive for couriers to tap into the rapid-growth e-commerce sector. “The couriers are very good at running logistics networks,” Hartmann said, “but when it comes to keeping up with e-commerce, it’s getting harder and harder.” So Temando’s solution is also helping courier companies deliver their services in more areas and industries.

Hartmann admits that starting a business is hard and he’s glad the Talent Unleashed Awards are recognising the successes of Australian innovators. The Temando CEO says it was a privilege to win, and believes the awards are important in helping highlight the growing entrepreneurial ecosystem and tech sector.

“It’s really important as a sector that we celebrate success and we help all those that are at earlier stages of the journey,” Hartmann said, “I think we have a collective responsibility to try and highlight the success of any Australian business that privileged to make it through the gauntlet because entrepreneurialism is hard.”

But on a lighter note, Hartmann is excited to be visiting Branson’s Necker Island next year, on a personal trip.

“I keep practising kiteboarding,” he said and explained that it’s one of Richard Branson’s hobbies. “I met a friend of his and I figured the only way I was ever going to get an invite was if I learnt how to kiteboard.”

Is entering the 2016 Talent Unleashed Awards part of your journey? Check out the categories and enter here.

Startup Daily