Callbox Storage is on the move.
The Dallas-based on-demand storage services company recently announced a launch in Phoenix marking its fifth market. It already operates in Dallas, Fort Worth, Austin, and Houston.
While Callbox is growing geographically, it also is expanding its reach within the larger logistics space by adding delivery service fulfillment to its range of services as well as rapidly increasing its customer base. New customer sign-ups in April were double what the company projected, Kyle Bainter, Callbox Storage co-founder and CEO, told Dallas Innovates. Last week, Callbox was voted as one of the top three early-stage companies in the nation at the FUND Conference in Austin.
“Not only do we have an opportunity to disrupt the $30 billion self-storage industry, but we also have a massive opportunity in logistics.”
The growth into logistics involved creating a new technology platform around Callbox’s commercial offering consisting of inventory management, fulfillment, and delivery services. Bainter said both he and Callbox co-founder Dan Slaven have backgrounds in commercial real estate and it made sense to combine those connections with the company’s existing storage business.
He said Callbox always believed there were opportunities in both residential storage and commercial logistics.
“Both of them are extremely hot industries right now and we knew we had the backgrounds and relationships to put us in a position to be successful in each,” Bainter said. “I can remember back to our pre-launch days when [Slaven] would say, ’We have a massive opportunity on the commercial side.’ He was right.”
The move into a broader area within the logistics space was somewhat baked into Callbox Storage from its founding via using “callbox” in the company name.
“We have repurposed what used to be a box where you made a phone call into a storage and logistics platform. The name could mean storage, logistics, fulfillment services, or delivery services,” Bainter said.
He added, “We knew when we selected the name Callbox Storage that we had a nice opportunity in logistics due the fact that logistics and delivery services have expanded so rapidly due to the e-commerce world we now live in. Not only do we have an opportunity to disrupt the $30 billion self-storage industry, but we also have a massive opportunity in logistics.”
THE IMPORTANCE OF VALUES
An early partner for Callbox’s inventory management and delivery services is Kansas City-based mattress company Prime Sleep. Gary Cary, Prime Sleep president and CEO, described the relationship as Callbox and Prime Sleep working together as sister companies with Callbox managing most of the logistics for Prime Sleep’s expansion into the Phoenix market including warehousing its products and handling the delivery and installation of the mattresses it sells.
“They are not just moving boxes. Callbox knows they are responsible for people’s cherished possessions and behave accordingly.”
The two companies share values around taking care of internal and external customers along with a dedication to excellence and a strong belief superior services is a clear marketplace advantage said Cary. These shared values are important for Prime Sleep because the delivery team is the last touch from the company in delivering what he called a “best class experience.”
“They are not just moving boxes. Callbox knows they are responsible for people’s cherished possessions and behave accordingly. This, I think, causes them to be more thoughtful about their approach to customer service,” Cary said.
Along with Prime Sleep, Bainter said Callbox also is handling commercial storage, inventory management, and delivery for properties under construction by developers of senior care facilities and hotels, and it plans on rolling out its new platform to retailers and other businesses.
With all the expansion happening, Callbox has made a number of moves in building out its executive team including promoting Vice President of Operations and Logistics, Luke Collins, to chief operating officer, promoting Vice President of Service, Tasso Ziebarth, to chief service officer, and hiring Johnnie Akin as chief financial officer after spending 13 years with Deloitte.
CALLBOX EYEING INTERNATIONAL GROWTH
Bainter said technology has enabled Callbox’s recent growth and ability to scale.
“We have placed a heavy emphasis on our technology so that we can do more with less. Our technology has streamlined our operation in such a way that we can easily scale our people and our business,” he said.
“Our technology has streamlined our operation in such a way that we can easily scale our people and our business.”
Even though the company is actively expanding its logistics services, it isn’t ignoring its original on-demand self-storage business. The Phoenix launch put Callbox into five markets and Bainter said it’s looking at three additional markets right now as well an eye toward international expansion.
“Self-storage has not been feasible in certain parts of the world due to density and other factors, but with our logistics-based model we believe we are able to pursue markets that traditionally have not made sense for the storage industry,” said Bainter. “This will take more planning and time, but our initial diligence efforts have revealed that this is very promising.”