Entrepreneurs Turn Local Shipping Biz into International Franchise

In this Salute to American Success we’re taking a look at PostNet. The company provides services ranging from postal services to graphic designs. With many years of experience in business, founders Steve Greenbaum and Brian Spindel met in Las Vegas in the 1980s and started working on a concept that would eventually become PostNet.

While in Las Vegas, the duo realized there weren’t many private or physical mailboxes in big-market areas and came up with an idea to capitalize off the lacking industry. In 1983, they opened their first pack-and-ship store.

“Customers would come in and take a package, not just receive,” Greenbaum said. “They’d also ask if they could make a copy. It was overwhelmingly successful. We also collaborated to help other people get into business in their own mail and packaging center.”

Despite the company’s early success in the 1980s there were some bumpy roads, especially entering the next decade, according to Greenbaum. Originally, he didn’t have an optimistic view on franchising.

“Our view of franchising was not that positive,” Greenbaum said. “We may have had the wrong view, but we were young entrepreneurs.”

After researching the concept, Greenbaum said he had a change of heart.

“We wanted the franchise to be open and inclusive,” he said. “It has been a unique family oriented culture… all sorts of franchise leadership groups as well.”

Today, the business has grown to nearly 700 franchises, according to Greenbaum. Along with more than 200 stores in the U.S., PostNet has a strong presence globally, including about 300 locations in South Africa. Greenbaum anticipates further growth this year.

“We’re expecting to open 30 locations in 2016,” he said. “The short-term strategy in the next five years or so is to grow to $300 million. Our long-term strategy is to double the revenue of the company.”

With the digital age continuing to boom, the online sector of a business is key to growth. PostNet is trying to capitalize off this development.

“Online revenue has grown exponentially,” Greenbaum said. “We’re really seeing the click side [of the business] driving revenue growth and enhancement… the online side of the business has growth potential.”