Markets in Everything: Auction-style Shipping
(CNNMoney.com) -- In 2001, Matt Chasen's mother wanted to send an antique dresser from Ohio to Texas, but was staggered when she received a $1,000 shipping quote -- far more than the dresser was worth. Unable to find a cheaper option, she never sent it.
One year later, Chasen reserved a nine-foot truck to move from Seattle to Austin. When he arrived at the rental center, the only one left was a 20-footer, so he took it. Standing in the back of the cavernous vehicle, he thought of his mother.
"I thought, 'Wow I wish I could have gotten in touch with people with half-empty trucks to move my mom's dresser,'" he recalls.
The idea: Inspiration hit Chasen, 34, like a Mack truck. Why not create a sort of eBay for shipping, a Web site that would make the process cheaper and more efficient by taking advantage of all the empty trucks on the road?
So he started uShip.com six years ago and has brokered $125 million in shipping fees.