December 1, 2014
Passenger Baggage Xpress (PBX) has created an electronic tagging system for checked bags. Imagine being able to confidently check luggage (we’ll forget for a moment about the exorbitant checked baggage fees that exist) with the security of knowing that even if your luggage takes a detour to Denver when you’re flying to San Francisco, there is a guarantee you will be quickly reunited with it. PBX is an ambitious company out of Little Rock, Arkansas that is working on making this guarantee a reality.
PBX is solving a problem that exists for both travelers and airlines. Their combination of a supplemental tag plus mobile platform opens a direct line of communication between the lost luggage and the airport or airline carrier. This product has been engineered to eliminate the time that it usually takes to research where the bag is coming from, where it was supposed to go, and where it actually ended up. Each tag has its own unique identification number that helps locate the bag, and then the airline or airport has the ability to send you push notifications, text messages, or emails, which facilitates the quick return of your belongings.
The founders are brothers Brandon and Michael Eason. It’s apparent that they work well together gauging by PBX’s success up to this point. Personality-wise they are very different, but they balance each other out. For example, Brandon identifies his greatest personal weakness as being a poor networker. Thankfully, Michael’s social personality picks up the slack in that department. According to Brandon, Michael has a personality that “lights a room when he walks in. I have the opportunity to piggy back off his strengths.”
Brandon took the time to answer a few other questions for us about his experience starting up and what makes PBX unique:
What is the hardest lesson you’ve had to learn as a founder?
The hardest lesson we have learned is team building, and how critical it is to your success. You must seek those who compensate for your weaknesses. You can be ok at a lot of things but never great at anything.
What has been your most encouraging sign of success?
During our beta test, we tested passenger participation at the worst time of the morning, 6am. We knew if someone stopped to register their luggage at that time of the morning, then we had something. Little did we know, 34% of all the passengers stopped and registered their luggage with us. We knew then, that we were on to something.
What is your long term vision for PBX?
Our vision is to expand worldwide and cover 90% of all public airports. We would like for our product to have luggage pickup capabilities, allowing passengers to schedule a pickup of their luggage through our mobile platform.
What’s the biggest advantage and disadvantage of starting up in Little Rock?
The biggest advantage of our city is also a disadvantage. Our city is not known for being a place for products and solutions for the airline industry. In some cases it works because people are excited about bringing that here to the city. In other cases, it lacks the network necessary to provide such a product to the industry as a whole.
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