An entrepreneur is giving 111 Twitterers free shares for retweeting a message promoting SendSocial, a service which allows people to send packages using only the recipient's Twitter handle or email address.
SendSocial launched to UK consumers today with the proposition that a sender does not have to know a recipient's physical address for a package to be delivered.
The process involves SendSocial.com contacting the recipient via Twitter or email to check whether they want to receive the package from the sender.
If they agree, the sender is provided with a barcode they need to print out and put on their parcel instead of an address. A courier turns up the next day to collect the parcel, which is delivered within five working days.
Pricing starts at £3.99 for parcels weighing up to 2kg. SendSocial.com's courier partner is myHermes, which hinted the service had interest from retailers.
Jon Tobbell, commercial director of myHermes, said: "We're ready for volume sales, given our existing corporate client base, including Next, QVC, and other well-known companies."
A 10% pool of shares in SendSocial has been put aside for people who retweeted a message created when SendSocial was conceived in March by entrepreneur Ben Way, who remains "heavily involved" according to SendSocial director Jonathan Grubin.
Way initially asked for feedback about his idea on his blog on 3 March, before posting a fuller business plan on 4 March that included instructions for claiming the free shares within a seven-day deadline.
Way said: "Seeing as this is a twitter idea I thought I would ask the Twitter community for feedback to see if it is what the community wants, and because that feedback is valuable and does not waste my money if it is a shit idea.
"I am prepared to give up 10% pool of the shares in the company to anybody who either gets this message out there by RT this message: RT @benpbway IS GIVING AWAY 10% POOL OF SHARES IN SENDSOCIAL.COM TO ANYBODY WHO RE-TWITTERS THIS MESSAGE GO TO SENDSOCIAL.COM FOR DETAILS."
According to Grubin, while 148 people retweeted the message, only 111 of them answered a second request to register at a shareholders portal. Lawyers are currently drawing up an agreement between the company and the shareholders.
Way has an incubation company called The Rainmakers and has appeared on Channel 4's 'The Secret Millionaire' in 2006. He set up dotcom company Waysearch.com in 2000 when he was 19 years old, securing £25m of venture capital from Jersey by signing a contract agreeing to abstain from alcohol and women until his 20th birthday.
After setting up the SendSocial concept, Way went on to bring in a management team for the company.
The team consists of Glen Richardson (27, Cumbria), Antony Stevenson (24, Derby), Jonathan Grubin (18, Newcastle), Marc Falk (21, Denmark), Simon Campbell (31, London), Tom Beckenham (35, London) and James Cranwell-Ward (24, London).
According to the Sunday Telegraph, which has covered the launch, Campbell is also chief executive of Viapost.com, which allows people to send post from their computer to any UK address.
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