Startup Rynly Seeks to Disrupt Shipping Status Quo
As technology advances at a lightning-fast pace, the network that connects everyone is an ever-evolving landscape, which incipient companies tirelessly mine in hope of unearthing the next billion-dollar gem. Some are already household names. Need a ride? Call up a ride share company. Want to sell your couch or clean out your closet? Try Craigslist, eBay, or even LetGo. These peer-to-peer business models live in the realm of the cutting edge, and Rynly is the latest enterprise to push that boundary.
Operational since June 2018, Rynly is a shipping start-up geared toward serving businesses and corporations in Portland and Seattle. “They can use our web app or iOS app to ship packages,” explains Jonny Perez, Rynly’s marketing coordinator. “It’s simple: visit www.rynly.com, create an account with us, select your package size, enter the package information, confirm the destination, and print a label for the package.”
On top of the user-friendly interface, it’s speed that makes Rynly such an alluring option, despite being in its early stages. Currently, packages are picked up at the user’s location, cost free, within two hours of entering the system on average. Local deliveries are made every day, and longer transportation between the two metropolitan areas occurs on Tuesday and Thursday. Typical automated, tracking notifications are available via email as well.
But, where Rynly takes a detour, setting them apart from any other logistics company, is with who’s behind the wheel. The start-up crowdsources its drivers similar to how ride-share giants operate. “Right now, drivers are paid a generous rate, but as volume picks up, drivers will be paid in a comparable market rate with the amount of packages and distance being taken into account for payment rates,” says Perez. “Feedback from current drivers who already drive for ride-share companies has been very positive when they deliver some of our packages, so I guess we’re doing something right.”
Even to those who don’t regularly drive for money, delivering for Rynly can be a novel way to make some extra cash on planned trips. Say you’re already heading to Portland to catch a Trail Blazers game or traveling to Seattle for a Thanksgiving dinner with family. Through the app, Rynly will notify you of packages awaiting pickup nearby and share information on where they are to be dropped off—simple as that.
Outside of the obvious no-nos (live animals, alcohol, firearms, etc.), as long as the items can fit in one of Rynly’s five standard containers, they can be transported at a remarkably affordable cost. The sizes range from envelope (9 inch x 12 inch) to full box (12 inch x 18 inch x 18 inch), and prices are tiered by $5, $7, and $10, with no hidden fees. “Until further notice, we will deliver boxes for first-time shippers,” says Perez. “Customers can also use their own boxes if they are reasonably close to our posted dimensions.” If the product is too large, as long as it weighs less than 25 pounds, the company recommends contacting them for potential customized offerings.
While the concept is innovative, it’s undeniable that the market is ultra competitive, especially considering the familiarity with deep-rooted carriers, and the world’s largest e-commerce company, Amazon, is in their neck of the woods. Still, Rynly is unfazed and confident in the affordability it can provide clients. “Being the ‘little guys,’ we have a lot to prove, but we are not intimidated by the challenge,” says Perez. “As of right now, when it comes to our box sizes, we are way cheaper than legacy carriers with the savings being the most noticeable when shipping to Seattle. On some package sizes, we are up to 80 percent cheaper.”
Using technology and momentum from the next round of funding, the company looks forward to expanding to San Francisco and Los Angeles in 2019, using a comparable system between the cities. Any growth will largely hinge on the population’s participation, an ideal represented in Rynly’s name. “It is derived from the Mandarin translation of ‘power to the people,’ roughly pronounced as ‘RINmin de LIliang’. Since Mandarin is very tonal, “Rin” and “Li” are the loudest part of the phrase,” Perez says. “This was chosen by our founder to honor his Chinese-American heritage and to embody our business model.”
The exciting potential is there, but for now, Rynly is still focused on its home territory and, true to the Oregon spirit, it’s fostering success with an energetic yet environmentally minded approach. “Unlike larger companies, we don’t have large warehouses; instead, we partner with local businesses that meet our standards to hold or receive our packages, greatly reducing our carbon footprint,” says Perez. “Our app selects the most efficient route for delivery. We partner with long-distance commuters and independent drivers who are already on the road to deliver our packages.”