Entrepreneurs Evan Baehr and Will Davis started Outbox, a company based in Austin, Texas that provided people with mail sorting/scanning/digitizing services.
They grew quickly, with people signing up in droves, local post offices cooperating with forwarding contracts, and the company getting rave reviews:
“Outbox is one of those ‘wow’ products. The moment I got my first batch of mail through their interface, I couldn’t believe it. It was pure magic. I’m a customer for life.” ~ Matt Galligan, CEO of Circa
“Amazing service – can’t live without it. Read, sort, forward and unsubscribe from your physical mail, all online.” ~ Naval Ravikant, founder/CEO of Angellist
Then, when CNBC carried their story nationally and they expanded from Austin, TX to San Francisco, CA, Evan and Will got a call requesting them to come to Washington to meet with the Postmaster General. They thought they would discuss working with the USPS nationally….
But instead, their meeting with the Postmaster General was joined by the USPS’s General Counsel and Chief of Digital Strategy, and they were told:
“…we have a misunderstanding. You disrupt my service and we will never work with you … You mentioned making the service better for our customers; but the American citizens aren’t our customers—about 400 junk mailers are our customers. Your service hurts our ability to serve those customers.”
They attempted to work around the USPS’s blockade by servicing their customers directly, but the increased costs of doing so forced them to close their business.
Read the full story here: www.insidesources.com/outbox-vs-usps-how-the-post-office-killed-digital-mail/
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